Langues et civilisations
à tradition orale

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Intranet Lacito français


The LACITO in a nutshell


logo« Langues et Civilisations à Tradition Orale»
a research unit of French CNRS

LACITO is a research center based in Paris, a member of the national network of CNRS departments. Ever since its foundation in 1976, LACITO has been specializing in the description, documentation and analysis of under-documented languages of the world.
The members of LACITO carry out linguistic and anthropological fieldwork on all continents, and have studied more than 200 languages over the years. This interactive map will allow you to explore these languages one by one, with links to freely accessible audio archives, and much more. [The key to the map's symbols can be found here.] aa See more about LACITO 




Events and activities


• Upcoming or past conferences


Diversité des langues et changement historique [Language diversity and historical change] - Langues océaniennes [Oceanic languages] - Langues tibéto-birmanes [Tibeto-Burman languages] - Linguistique historique et comparatisme austronésien [Historical linguistics and Oceanic comparative studies] - Typologie et dialogue : la structuration informationnelle des questions et des réponses - Typologie et diversité des langues [Typology and language diversity] aa See more


Exhibits and posters for the general public

Lectures and talks

Video – movies, lectures and talks video



Hot from the press


2018. La Kanaky Nouvelle-Calédonie a rendez-vous avec l'histoire nouveau
[2018. Kanaky New Caledonia has a date with History]
Isabelle Leblic & UmBerto COGOLA (eds)

Le Journal de la Société des Océanistes revient une nouvelle fois sur la Nouvelle-Calédonie que nombre d'entre nous appellent désormais Kanaky Nouvelle-Calédonie. Plusieurs volumes lui ont été consacrés depuis les débuts du JSO et, à chaque fois, pour marquer une étape de l'histoire calédonienne. 2018 est une date importante dans l'histoire de ce pays puisque c'est celle du rendez-vous avec […]etcSee more in French


Le chant traditionnel : questions de sens et de style. nouveau
Approche interdisciplinaire ethnomusicologique et ethnolinguistique

André-Marie Despringre (ed.)

A.-M. Despringre et S. Mougin présentent dans cet ouvrage des méthodes rigoureuses de descriptions et d'interprétations qui sont susceptibles de définir au mieux le sens et le style collectifs de quelques répertoires de chansons traditionnelles […]etcSee more in French


Dictionnaire du monzombo (langue oubanguienne de Centrafrique et des Congo)

Outre son intérêt comme langue oubanguienne de moyenne importance (12000 locuteurs environ) le monzombo présente pour les linguistes un intérêt majeur. Si on le compare aux langues qui ont avec elle la parenté la plus proche, le ngbaka et le gbanzili, un ammuïssement des consonnes intervocaliques, k, t, l, a abouti à un phénomène de transphonologisation tel que les trisyllabes sont devenus dissyllabes, voire monosyllabes, […]etcSee more in French


Information Structure in Lesser-described Languages
Studies in prosody and syntax

Evangelia ADAMOU, Katharina HAUDE, Martine VANHOVE (eds)

The articles compiled in this volume offer new insights into the wealth of prosodic and syntactic phenomena involved in the encoding of information structure categories. They present data from languages which are rarely, if ever, taken into account in the most prominent approaches in information structure theory, and which belong to[…]etcSee more


Non-Canonical Gender Systems
Sebastian FEDDEN, Jenny AUDRING, and Greville G. CORBETT (eds)

Grammatical gender is famously the most puzzling of the grammatical categories. Despite our solid knowledge about the typology of gender systems, exciting and unexpected patterns keep turning up which defy easy classification and straightforward analysis. Some of these question, stretch, or even threaten to cross the outer boundaries of etcSee more


Epistemic Modalities and Evidentiality in Cross-linguistic Perspective
Zlatka GUENTCHÉVA (ed.)

This volume explores phenomena which come under the heading of epistemic modalities and evidentiality in more or less well-known languages (Germanic, Romance, Balto-Slavic, Hungarian, Tibetan, Lakandon and Yucatec Maya, Arwak-Chibchan Kogi and Ika). It reveals cross-linguistic variations in the structuring of these vast fields of enquiry […]etcSee more


etc Latest books and article/book's chapters





jmctDu terrain au cognitif – Linguistique, ethnolinguistique, ethnosciences –
À Jacqueline M.C. Thomas
[From fieldwork to cognition – Linguistics, ethnolinguistics, ethnosciences –
For Jacqueline M.C. Thomas
(editors) E. Motte-Florac & G. Guarisma

French presentation translated into English:
[Jacqueline M.C. Thomas, ethnolinguist and founder of the LACITO, has untiringly worked to establish the importance of not separating a language from the community speaking it. "Linguistic studies are meaningless unless they are based on very sound knowledge of the culture in which the languages are spoken". She further insists that "to study a society means to perfectly master the language(s) it speaks".
Based on examples garnered from across the globe, this Festschrift testifies to the multiplicity of ways in which the complexities of language and discourse can be broached […] ]
etcSee more

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hypothesesLes carnets du Lacitohypotheses

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photo PANGLOSS - The Oral Archives

North Vanuatu texts, see here

A noterLatest news

brevesSeminar TACOL
"Terrains, analyse
et comparaison des langues

On Wednesday 27 March 2019 14.30, talk by Jérémy Pasquereau & Patricia Cabredo Hofherr (U. de Surrey) on "Pluractionality and subject number in Seri (Cmiique Iitom, isolate, Sonora, Mexico)" (at Lacito, room 311)
aa See more

brevesConjoined Seminar
Jeux de langage / TACOL

On Thursday 4 April 2019 (14.30),
talk byNancy Hawker (Oxford University) on "Only joking? The pragmatics of multilingual humour in Palestinian and Israeli political discourse"
(at Lacito, room 311)
aa See more on the web pages
Jeux de langage (or) TACOL

"Jeux de langage"


On Tuesday 9 April 2019 (14.15), talk of Kristin Vold Lexander (Llacan), on "Jeux de langage et jeux de média dans un cadre familial plurilingue",
at Lacito (room 311)
aa See more in French

brevesSeminar "Indexicalités
langagières et sociales"


On Thursday 11 April 2019 11.00-13.00, Talk of Alexandra Pillen (London University, Great-Britain)
on A space of one's own in language. The reflexive pronoun in Kurdish (Kurmanci)", Villejuif (buld.D, Conference room)
aa See more

breves47th Annual Meeting of the North Atlantic Conference on Afroasiatic Linguistics (NACAL 47)
24-26 June, 2019

Université Sorbonne Paris Cité - INALCO, 65 rue des Grands Moulins, 75013 Paris
Organising committee: L. Souag, M. B. Lafkioui et C. Reintges
aa See more

expositions40 photos for Lacito's 40th birthday
aa See more

expositions10 exhibits recommended by the Lacito which retrace...
...30 years of fieldwork devoted to the study of languages and the peoples who speak them. aa See more

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