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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Dr Rebecca Mitchell

Rebecca Mitchell
Affiliated Lecturer
Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages
Contact details: 

Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics
Raised Faculty Building
University of Cambridge
Sidgwick Avenue
United Kingdom


Rebecca Mitchell read Modern and Medieval Languages at Cambridge, and then worked as an assistant lecturer in phonetics at the University of Vigo, Spain. She received an MA in translation and interpreting from the University of Kent, and subsequently returned to Cambridge where she was awarded a PhD on syntactic variation in the French of Gabon. She is regularly invited to give talks on linguistics in schools and colleges, and at national events such as the Language Show. She has reviewed for System and French Studies, and is on the scientific committee for Schools and National Identities in French-speaking Africa (Routledge, forthcoming). Dr Mitchell is also the UK’s leading exponent of traditional dance from Afghanistan. 

Research interests: 

Dr Mitchell’s research interests mainly concern the sociolinguistics of sub-Saharan Africa. She has focussed primarily on language attitudes and language endangerment in Gabon and Cameroon, and most recently on the language of public healthcare in Ghana. She has also worked on Dari, and on traditional belief systems in São Tomé. 

Published works: 

2019. ‘Dari’, Babel, 26: 26-27.

2017. A descriptive grammar of Dari (with D. Naser). Munich: Lincom Europa.

2015. ‘To be a good westerner, you need to know where you come from’: challenges facing language revitalization in central Africa’, in Jones, M. (ed.) Language Endangerment: Policy and Planning, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

2015. Let’s Speak Cape Verdean (English translation), Quint, N (original author), London: Battlebridge.

2012. ‘Language, education and identity in Gabon’, in Esch, E. and Solly, M. (eds.) The Sociolinguistics of Language Education in International Contexts, New York: Peter Lang.

2009. A study in syntactic variation: mood usage in Gabonese French. Munich: Lincom Europa.

2004. ‘Les perceptions du français gabonais et la distribution des langues au Gabon’, Le Français en Afrique 19: 177-188.