HAMILTON'S LEAVENWORTH LECTURE FEATURES AUTHOR/LINGUIST JEAN D'COSTA
D'Costa is a scholar of international distinction who has studied bothcontemporary and past multilingual situations. Her talk will focus on variousaspects of language including: language attitudes in society; and languagechanges brought about by politics, slavery, immigration, war and isolation.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, D'Costa is the daughter of Jamaicanschoolteachers. She earned an undergraduate degree from University College ofthe West Indies and completed advanced studies at Oxford. For 15 years, shetaught Old English and historical linguistics at the University of the WestIndies. She joined the Hamilton faculty in 1980.
D'Costa has written numerous books, publications and articles. Her scholarlyworks include two books co-authored with Barbara Lalla, Language in Exile:Three Hundred Years of Jamaican Creole and Voices in Exile: An Anthologyof 18th and 19th Century Jamaican Text. She is a published poet, and hasauthored several novels for young people, including Sprat Morrison,Escape to Last Man Peak and Voice in the Wind.
In 1994, D'Costa was awarded the Institute of Jamaica's Musgrave Silver Medalfor her contributions in children's literature and Creole linguistics.Musgrave Medals represent the pinnacle of achievement in Jamaican literature,science and art.