Department of Anthropology
Additional Positions at AUProfessor, Department of Anthropology
Participating faculty: American Studies and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies programs
- Language in everyday life is shaped by material conditions, by ideology, by power, by resistance– and by yearnings that are never extinguished by social regulation. Professor Leap's studies of American Indian English, language and AIDS, “gay men’s English” and now language, sexuality and globalization show how these themes play out on American Indian reservations, in South African townships, in DC public schools, and in lesbian/gay/ transgender communities. Through these studies he works with native speakers who are interrogating their own linguistic practices and engaging the politics of language use within their own speech communities. The Lavender Languages Conference (which he coordinates yearly), and his courses in linguistics, gender/sexuality and public anthropology provide for a similar political world. All of this shows him that there is no need to draw boundaries between theory and practice in today’s anthropology. There is one struggle, and local constituencies are already engaged in it. His task, as a public anthropologist, is to align the resources of the academe with those ongoing initiatives and visions.
DegreesPhD, Anthropology, Linguistics Concentration, Southern Methodist University
BA, Anthropology and Linguistics, Florida State University
- CAS - Anthropology
- Hamilton - 201A
- Spring 2013
M 1:30 - 3:30 PM , W 1:00- 5:00 PM
FOR THE MEDIA
To request an interview for a
news story, call AU Communications
at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.
- Anthropology Department
Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities
Public anthropology; Language, Sexuality, Ideology and Globalization; lesbian/gay/transgender studies
Honors, Awards, and Fellowships
Out in Theory (co-edited with Ellen Lewin, 2002 ) received the Ruth Benedict prize for outstanding edited collection in lesbian/gay anthropology in 2003, Society of Lesbian and Gay Anthropologists, American Anthropological Association , 2004 . It was chosen as one of Choice Magazine’s Outstanding Academic Titles for 2003
Word's Out (Leap, 1996) received the Ruth Benedict prize for the outstanding lesbian/gay monograph of 1996, Society of Lesbian and Gay Anthropologists, American Anthropological Association , 1996.
- Lewin, Ellen and William L. Leap, eds. 1976 Out in The Field Urbana: University of Illinois Press., 2002 Out in Theory Urbana: University of Illinois Press., 2009 Out in Public New York City: Blackwells.
- Leap, William and Tom Boellstorff, eds. 2004 Speaking in Queer Tongues: Gay Language and Globalization.Urbana: University of Illinois Press., Leap, William 1993 American Indian English. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press.
- 1996 Word’s Out: Gay Men’s English. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press)
- 2003 Language and gendered modernity. in The Handbook of Language and Gender. Janet Holmes and Miriam Meyerhoff, eds pp. 401-422. London: Blackwells.
- 2005 Finding the centre: Claiming gay space in Cape Town, South Africa in Performing Queer-Shaping Sexuality. 1994-2004. Mikki van Zyl and Melissa Styn, eds. Pp 235-266. Cape Town: Kwela Press.
- 2008 "Queering gay men’s English.” in Language and Gender Research Methodologies. Kate Harrington, Lia Litosseliti, Helen Sauntson, and Jane Sunderland, eds. pp. 408-429. Basingstoke: Palgrave
- 2008 “True thing that binds us”: Globalization, U.S. language pluralism and gay men’s English.” in The Impact of Globalization on the United States: Culture And Society. Michelle Bertho, eds. pp.183-209. Westport CT: Praeger Publishers.
Area of Expertise: Lesbian, gay, and transgender issues; gay language; language, sexuality and public media; pornography; gay media; same-sex marriage; homophobia; AIDS
Additional Information: William (Bill) Leap is coeditor of the Journal of Language and Sexuality. His recent publications include special issues of the journals Gender and Language (fall 2011) and Journal of Homosexuality (summer 2011) and the collection Out in Public: Lesbian and Gay Anthropology in a Globalizing World,coedited with Ellen Lewin (2009).
To request an interview please call AU Media Relations at 202-885-5950 or submit an interview request form.
AU News and Achievements
Scholars, Activists Meet for 16th Annual Lavender Languages Conference
The world's only conference focusing on the importance of language—broadly defined—in lesbian, gay, ...