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Samuli Kaislaniemi

Postdoctoral Researcher

School of Humanities, Philosophical Faculty

I am an Academy of Finland Postdoctoral Scholar working on early modern English letters and letter-writing. I am interested in both the texts of the letters and their material aspects. My current project is titled Material Practices Meet Sociolinguistics: Letter-writing in Seventeenth-century England, and I am surveying some 3,000 letters, looking at how their visual and material features (layout, folding and sealing) correlate with social aspects of the correspondents (age, gender, social rank, relationship of writer and recipient).

My work falls under the broad umbrella of historical sociolinguistics, and I study language use and language users in their social contexts. I have been particularly interested in multilingual practices such as code-switching (changing language within a single communicative event), especially in the letters of early English East India Company merchants (1600–1630). I also work on corpus compilation (the creation of linguistic resources for quantitative analysis), scholarly editing of historical texts, and historical literacy (particularly palaeography, the study of handwriting).


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