Keynote Speakers

The 2018 keynote speakers are María Coca Chavarría, Gaspar Pedro González, and Dan Everett

María Coca Chavarría

Professor for the Graduate School at San Marcos University

Maria C. Chavarria is an outstanding linguist and teacher. She studied at San Marcos University in Peru where she got her bachelor in Linguistics and Education. Later, she attended the University of Minnesota and got a Master and a Ph.D. from that institution.

She has worked with Amazonian languages, especially Ese Eja (Takanan family) in Peru and Bolivia. In addition, Professor Chavarria has written many articles and books regarding Ese Eja language, oral tradition and bilingual education. She has been teacher at San Marcos University in Peru, Indiana University (Fort Wayne), University of Saint Thomas and Macalester College in Minnesota. Her work has been recognized by Spencer Foundation (1996), Guggenheim (1999) and Endowment for the Humanities (2008). She helped Ese Eja people from Peru to design their first alphabet, which is being used in the schools. Chavarría has collected Ese Eja’s oral tradition for many years and recently the Peruvian government has published it in bilingual edition. Currently, she is a professor at the Graduate School at San Marcos University.

Maria Chavarria

Gaspar Pedro González


Keynote Address: "La Palabra, Principal Elemento de las Culturas Mayas"


Dan Everett

Dean of Arts and Sciences at Bentley University

Dan Everett is a linguist focused on understanding how cultural values constrain language, incorporating the tradition of William James.  He has conducted extensive field research throughout jungle villages and has worked closely in Brazil, completing an Sc.D. in Linguistics at the University of Campinas. Over the years, he has taught at the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Manchester, and Illinois State University. He is now the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Bentley University. 

Keynote Address: Latin American Indigenous Cultures in Western Science and Society Or Why the Grave of Frederick the Great is Covered in Potatoes

Abstract: Latin American indigenous languages have altered our understanding of our species and how it copes with the common problems of human survival. They bring to us foods, philosophies, languages, and concepts of diversity that are unique and profound. My focus in this talk is life and learning among Latin American indigenous peoples, focusing on my work among various indigenous societies of Brazil. I will argue that culture is far richer than often believed and that environment cannot explain values or languages. Latin American societies have produced profound cognitive innovations that should be more widely known.

Dan Everett