My name is Eduardo Rivail Ribeiro. Born and raised in Brazil, I currently live in Maryland, USA, where I work as a Spanish medical interpreter. As a linguist, I have conducted research on indigenous South American languages and Brazilian Portuguese, my native language. Based on extensive field work in the Brazilian Amazon, I obtained a PhD at the University of Chicago’s Department of Linguistics in 2012.

Although my current job does not involve academic pursuits, I remain interested in all things Karajá (the Macro-Jê language which is the topic of both my MA thesis and my PhD dissertation), in historical linguistics and morphology (and, better yet, a combination of both). The relationship between language and culture, a core interest in my work as a linguist, also informs my work as a medical interpreter.

I also remain deeply committed to promoting cultural diversity and democratizing access to academic resources, including the repatriation of indigenous knowledge. That commitment is the main motivation behind the Curt Nimuendajú Digital Library, a community-based, open-access repository of resources on South American cultures and languages which I've created and manage.

Past activities

After concluding my PhD, I lived in Belém, in the Brazilian Amazon, where I worked as a linguistics visiting professor at the Federal University of Pará (2012-2013) and on the documentation and description of two endangered Amazonian languages, Aikanã and Kwazá (Rondônia, Brazil), in a project coordinated by Hein van der Voort, under a DoBeS post-doc grant from the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics.

Between 2014 and 2016, I was a Peter Buck Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Museum of Natural History (Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC), under the guidance of William Merrill, Curator for Latin America. My research project, entitled "Language and prehistory in South America: A reconstruction of Proto-Jê and an in-depth investigation of the Macro-Jê hypothesis", aimed at conducting a thorough reconstruction of Proto-Jê, the common ancestor of around a dozen indigenous languages spoken from the Amazon to southern Brazil.

I also have acquired considerable experience teaching Brazilian Portuguese and Spanish.

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