W. South Coblin

Professor of Classical Chinese
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INTERESTS

Chinese historical phonology, Chinese historical and comparative dialectology, Sino-Tibetan comparative and historical linguistics; Classical Chinese grammar, the language of early Chinese vernacular texts; the origins, history, and development of Chinese koines; history and development of pre-modern Mandarin, Chinese in 'Phag-pa script.

REGULARLY TAUGHT COURSES

039:108 Classical Chinese: First Semester
039:109 Classical Chinese: Second Semester
039:139 Chinese Historical Phonology
039:144 Introduction to Chinese Linguistics
039:239 Seminar in Chinese Linguistics

BACKGROUND

Educational:

B.A., University of Washington, 1967, Chinese
Ph.D., University of Washington, 1972, Chinese

Professional:

Academic:

  • University of Washington:

Research Assistant, 1971-72
Teaching Associate, 1972-73

  • University of Iowa:

    Assistant Professor, 1973-78
    Associate Professor, 1978-85
    Professor, 1985-

Administrative:

  • University of Iowa:

    Acting Chairman, Department of Asian Languages and Literature, 1978, 1981-82
    Chairman, 1982-84

Academic Honors and Awards (since 1973):

Old Gold Faculty Fellowships, University of Iowa, 1974 and 1976
ACLS Grant for Research in Chinese Civilization, Summer, 1975
ACLS Grant for Research in Chinese Civilization, 1979-80
ACLS China Conference Travel Grant, Summer, 1982
MUCIA International Travel Grant, Summer, 1982
ACLS Grant for Research in Chinese Studies, 1985-86
CCK Foundation Senior Scholar Grant for Chinese Studies, 1997-8
Royal Asiatic Society Barwis-Holliday Award for Far Eastern Studies, 2005

Committee Assignments:

University of Iowa

Language Laboratory Advisory Committee, 1974-75
Committee on Language Instruction, 1976-77
Interdepartmental Language Committee, 1979
Foreign Language Council, 1983-84
Humanities Task Force, 1982-84
Advisory Committee on Awards in the Humanities, 1982- 83
Iowa Critical Languages Program, 1986-87
Search Committee, Director of International Programs, 1987-88
Language Media Center Advisory Committee, 1989-90

Professional Service

American Oriental Society, Nominating Committee, 1979- 82
International Association of Chinese Linguistics, Executive Committee(1994-97)
Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area, Editorial Committee (Current)
Yuen Ren Society Treasury of Chinese Dialect Data, Review Referee (Current)
Hanyushi yanjiu jikan (Chongqing), Editorial Committee (Current)
Vice President, International Association of Chinese Linguistics, 2000-2001
President, International Association of Chinese Linguistics, 2001-2002
Presidential Advisor, International Association of Chinese Linguistics, 2002- 2003
President, Li Fang-kuei Society for Chinese Linguistics, July 2007-present

Community Service:
Governor's Task Force on Foreign Language Studies and International Education, 1982-83
Consultant on the Governor's Trip to China, Sept. 1984

PUBLICATIONS

Books and Monographs:

  • A Handbook of Eastern Han Sound Glosses, The Chinese University Press, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 1983.
    • Reviews: W.H. Baxter, BSOAS 48 (1985), pp. 170-1.
      P.B. Denlinger, TP LXXII (1986), pp. 315-316.
      P.B. Denlinger, MS 37 (1986-87), pp. 311-327.
      G.L. Mattos, MS 36 (1984-5), pp. 211-227.
      E.G. Pulleyblank, JAOS 105 (1985), pp. 303-308.
      Victor Mair, Sino-Platonic Papers, 14 (December, 1989), pp. B-5 - B 6.
  • A Sinologist's Handlist of Sino-Tibetan Lexical Correspondences , Monumenta Serica Monograph Series, no. XVIII, Nettetal, 1986.
    • Reviews: P.B. Denlinger, MS 37 (1986-87), pp. 398-399.
      Søren Egerod. BSOAS 51 (1988), pp. 590-591.
      Bulcsu Siklo 2s , Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland No. 1 (1988), pp. 242-243.
      Victor Mair, Sino-Platonic Papers, 14 (December, 1989), pp. B-6 - B-7.
      G. Kara, Acta Orientalia Academia Scientarum Hungaricae 44 (1990), pp. 423-24.
  • A Study of the Old Tibetan Inscriptions , Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica, Special Publications No. 91. Taipei, 1987. By F.K. Li and W. South Coblin.
    • Review: Wang Yao, MZYW 1988.4.51-54.
  • Studies in Old Northwest Chinese , Journal of Chinese Linguistics Monograph Series Number 4. Berkeley. 1991.
  • A Compendium of Phonetics in Northwest Chinese , Journal of Chinese Linguistics Monograph Series Number 7. Berkeley. 1994.
  • Francisco Varo's Grammar of the Mandarin Language (1703) , W. South Coblin and Joseph A. Levi, Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 2000.
    • Reviews: Yao Xiaoping, ZGYW 2001.5.475-78.
      Barbara Niederer, Histoire Épistemologique Langage 24/1 (2002): 185-86
      Victor Mair, Sino-Platonic Papers (2004). pp. 14-17.
  • Comparative Phonology of the Hu2ang-X>i4ao Dialects, Language and Linguistics Monograph Series Number A-13, Taipei: Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, 2005.
  • Francisco Varo's Glossary of the Mandarin Language, Monumenta Serica Monograph Series, vols. LIII/1 and LIII/2, Nettetal: Steyler Verlag, 2006.
    • Reviews: Thomas Zimmer, China-Report (2006) 44.24-5.
      David Mungello, Sino-Western Cultural Relations Journal (2006), 28.83.
      Editor, Orientalische Literaturzeitung (2007) 102.2.245-247.
      John Witek, The Catholic Historical Review (2008) 94.1.187-188
      Volker Klöpsch, Oriens Extremus 46 (2007), p. 295-297.
      R. Po-chia Hsia, China Review International 15.4. (2008), pp. 470-474.
  • A Handbook of 'Phags-pa Chinese, Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2007.
    • Reviews: E. G. Pulleyblank, BSOAS (2007) 70.627-629.
    • Su-yang Hsiao, Chinese Studies (2008) 26.1.289-296
  • Modern Chinese phonology: from Gu1anhu4a to Mandarin, Collection des Cahiers Linguistique Asie Orientale, no. 11. Paris: Ècole des Hautes Études in Sciences Sociales, 2007.

Editing:

  • Papers from the Fourteenth International Conference on Sino-Tibetan Languages and Linguistics , edited by Chauncey Chu, W. South Coblin, and Feng-fu Tsao. Student Book Co., Taipei, 1983.
  • Studies in Honor of Jerry Norman, edited by W. South Coblin and Anne O. Yue. Institute of Chinese Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 2010.

Translations:

  • Che, Qian. "Certain Phonetic Changes in Tibetan in the Light of Variant and Erroneous Spellings in Old Tibetan Documents of the Royal Period." LTBA 13.1 (1990), pp. 79-88. Translated by W. South Coblin.
  • Che, Qian. "On Certain Tibetan and Chinese Phonological Questions of the Medieval Period." LTBA 14.2 (1991), pp. 65-92. Translated by W. South Coblin.

Journal Articles:

  • "An Early Tibetan Word for 'Horse'," JAOS, 94.1 (1974), pp. 124-5.
  • "The Initials of the Wei-Chin Period as revealed in the Phonological Glosses of Kuo P'u and Others," MS 31 (1974-5), pp. 288-318.
  • "Notes on Tibetan Verbal Morphology," T'oung Pao 52 (1976), pp. 45-70. [Chinese version in Minzu yuwen yanjiu 3 1984), pp. 107-132. Trans. by Yu Guanxing.]
  • "The Initials of Xu Shen's Language as Reflected in the Shuowen duruo Glosses," JCL 6 (1978), pp. 27-75.
  • "The Initials of the Eastern Han Period as Reflected in Phonological Glosses," MS 33 (1977-78), pp. 207-247.
  • "A New Study of the Pai-lang Songs," Tsing Hua Journal of Chinese Studies 12 (1979), pp. 179-216.
  • "The Finals of Xu Shen's Language as Reflected in the Shuowen duruo Glosses," JCL 7 (1979), pp. 181-245.
  • "The Finals of Cheng Hsüan's Language as Reflected in Phonological Glosses," MS 34 (1979-80), pp. 263-317.
  • "Notes on the Dialect of the Han Buddhist Transcriptions," Proceedings of the First International Conference on Sinology, Section on Linguistics and Paleography, Taipei, 1981. pp. 121-183.
  • "Notes on the Western Han Initials," Tsing Hua Journal of Chinese Studies, 14 (1982), pp. 111-133.
  • "The Finals of Yang Xiong's Language," JCL 12 (1984), pp. 1-52.
  • "The Finals of the Shiming Language," in Contributions to Sino- Tibetan Studies, E.J. Brill, Leiden, 1986. pp. 283-344.
  • "Some Sound Changes in the Western Han Dialect of Shu," JCL 14 (1986), pp. 184-226.
    [Chinese versions in Yuyanxue lunwenji, Taiyuan, 1989. pp. 219-237. Trans. by Guo Jianrong, Han Zijing, and Lu Jingwen; and in Yuwen lunwenji, Beijing 1991, by the same translators]
  • "The Rimes of Chang-an in Middle Han Times, Part I: The Late Western Han Period," AO ( Copenhagen) 47 (1986), pp. 93-131.
  • "The Rimes of Chang-an in Middle Han Times, Part II: The Early Eastern Han Period," AO 48 (1987), pp. 89-110.
  • "A Note on Old Tibetan Mu," LTBA 10.1 (1987), pp. 166-168.
  • " Fangyan Gleanings," MS 37 (1986-87), pp. 113-143.
  • "Notes on the Finals of a Northwest Dialect of Tang Times," BIHP LIX, Part III (1988), pp. 835-890.
  • "A Reexamination of the Second Edict of Khri-srong-lde-btsan," in Reflections on Tibetan Culture: Essays in Memory of Turrell V. Wylie, Lewiston/Queenston/Lampeter, 1990. pp. 165-185.
  • "Notes on the Initials of a Northwest Dialect of Tang Times," Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Sinology, Section on Linguistics and Paleography, Taipei, 1989. Vol. I, pp. 125-144.
  • "Notes on Sanghabhara's Mahamayuri Transcriptions," Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale XIX (1990), pp. 195-251.
  • "Notes on Old Tibetan rje-blas," Tibetan History and Language: Studies Dedicated to Uray Géza on his Seventieth Birthday (Wiener Studien zur Tibetologie und Buddhismuskunde, Heft 26). Vienna, 1991. pp. 63-110.
  • "A Study of the Old Tibetan Shangshu Paraphrase," Part I: JAOS 111.2 (1991), pp. 303-322; Part II: JAOS 111.3 (1991), pp. 523-539.
  • "A Survey of Yijing's Transcriptional Corpus," Yuyan yanjiu 1991.1, pp. 68-92.
  • "Thoughts on Dentilabialization in the Tang-time Dialects of Shazhou," T'oung Pao LXXVII (1991). pp. 88-107.
  • "Comparative Studies on some Tang-time Dialects of Shazhou," MS 40 (1992), pp. 269-361.
  • "BTD Revisited -- A Reconsideration of the Han Buddhist Transcriptional Dialect," BIHP 63 (1993), pp. 867-943.
  • "Erh ya," in Early Chinese Texts: A Bibliographical Guide, edited by Michael Loewe. Berkeley. 1993. pp. 94-99.
  • "A Note on the Modern Reading of Tufan," Sino-Platonic Papers 46 (July, 1994), pp. 149-151.
  • "Remarks on Some Early Buddhist Transcriptional Data from Northwest China," MS 42 (1994): 151-169.
  • "An Old Tibetan Variant for the Word "Fox," LTBA 17.2 (1994), pp. 117-119.
  • "Two Notes on the London Long Scroll," BSOAS LVIII (1995), pp. 104-108.
  • "Marginalia on Two Translations of the Qieyun Preface," JCL 24 (1996), pp. 85-97.
  • "Tone and Tone Sandhi in Early Qing Guanhua," Yuen Ren Society Treasury of Chinese Dialect Data 2 (1996), pp. 43-57.
  • Jerry L. Norman and W. South Coblin, "A New Approach to Chinese Historical Linguistics," JAOS 115.4 (1995), pp. 576-584. [Chinese version: "Hanyu lishi yuyanxue yanjiu de xin fangfa", (translators: Zhu Qingzhi and Zhang Yongyan), Hanyushi yanjiu jikan 1.674-691, Chengdu, 1998.]
  • "Northwest Reflections on the Yunjing," T'oung Pao 82 (1996), pp. 349-363.
  • "Palatalization of velars in the Nanking Dialect," BSOAS 60 (1997), pp. 533-537.
  • "Notes on the Sound System of Late Ming Guanhua," MS 45 (1997), pp. 261-307.
    Reviews: Laurent Sagart, Review Bibliographique de Sinologie 1998, p. 325.
    Editor, Sino-Western Cultural Relations Journal, 20 (1998), p. 56.
  • John Yu and W. South Coblin, "Dui wai gu Hanyu jiaoxue chutan - yi 'ye' ji qi xiangguan juxing wei li'" [Exploring the Methodology of Teaching Classical Chinese to Non-Native Students: the Particle ye and Related Sentence Patterns]. Yuyan jiaoxue yu yanjiu 2 (1998), pp. 96-107.
  • "Francisco Varo and the Sound System of Early Ming Mandarin," JAOS 118.2 (1998), pp. 262-267.
  • "Periodization in Northwest Chinese Dialect History," JCL 27 (1999), pp. 104-119.
  • "Thoughts on the Identity of the Chinese 'Phags-pa Dialect," Journal of Chinese Linguistics Monograph Series no. 15, Issues in Chinese Dialect Description and Classification, ed. Richard V. Simmons. Berkeley, 1999. pp. 84-144.
  • "Contact, Drift, and Convergence in Nanking Guanhua," Hanyushi yanjiu jikan 1999.2, pp. 379-431.
  • "Paul L-M. Serruys, C.I.C.M. (1912-1999)," MS 47 (1999), pp. 505-514.
  • Paul Harrison and W. South Coblin, "The Oldest Buddhist Incantation in Chinese? A Preliminary Study of the Chinese Transcriptions of the Mantra in the Druma-kinnara- r1aj1a-par>iprcch1a-s1utra ," in Buddhism across Boundaries - Chinese Buddhism and the Western Regions, Collection of Essays 1993, edited by John McRae and Jan Nattier. Taipei: Fo GuangShan Foundation, 1999. pp. 137-186.
  • "Late Apicalization in Nankingese," JCL 28 (2000), pp. 52-66.
  • "A Diachronic Study of Míng Gu1anhu4a Phonology," MS 48 (2000), pp. 267-335.
  • "The Phonology of Proto-Central Jiang-Huai: An Exercise in Comparative Reconstruction", in In Memory of Professor Li Fang-Kuei: Essays of Linguistic Change and the Chinese Dialects, Taipei and Seattle: Academia Sincia and the University of Washington. 2000. pp. 73-140.
  • "Fang-kuei Li: a Personal Memoir", in In Memory of Professor Li Fang-Kuei: Essays of Linguistic Change and the Chinese Dialects, Taipei and Seattle: Academia Sincia and the University of Washington. 2000. pp. 367-376.
  • "A Brief History of Mandarin," Journal of the American Oriental Society 120 (2000), pp. 537-552.
  • "'Phags-pa Chinese and the Standard Reading Pronunciation of Early Ming: A Comparative Study." Language and Linguistics 2.2 (2001), pp. 1-62.
  • John Yu and W. South Coblin, "Gu Hanyu jiaoxuezhong mingwuhua de Yingyi wenti" [English translation as a tool for solving nominalization problems in teaching Classical Chinese]. Yuyan jiaoxue yu yanjiu 2001.5, pp. 96-107.
  • "Thoughts on the Formation of Early Guanhua Phonology", Yuen Ren Society Treasury of Chinese Dialect Data 3 (2002), pp. 307-337.
  • "Migration history and dialect development in the lower Yangtze watershed," Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies ( London), 65.3 (2002), pp. 529-543.
  • "Reflections on the Study of Post-Medieval Chinese Historical Phonology," Papers from the Third International conference on Sinology, Linguistics Section, Dialect Variation in Chinese, ed. Dah-an Ho, Taipei: Institute of Linguistics, Preparatory Office Academia Sinica, 2002. pp. 23-50.
  • "On Certain Functions of 'A-chung in Early Tibetan Transcriptional Texts," Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area 25.2 (2002) p.169-184.
  • "A Palatal Nasal in Late Ming Guanhua,", Acta Orientalia 63 (2002) pp. 207-220.
  • "A Sample of Eighteenth Century spoken Mandarin from North China", Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale 32.2 (2003), pp. 195-244.
  • "Robert Morrison and the Phonology of Mid-Qing Mandarin", Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Series 3, 13.3 (2003), pp.339-355. Royal Asiatic Society Barwis-Holliday Prize Essay.
  • "The Chiehyunn and the Current State of Chinese Historical Phonology," Journal of the American Oriental Society 123.2 (2003), pp. 377-383.
  • Towards a Common J>i1ang-Hu2a>i Sound System," in Studies on Sino-Tibetan Languages - Papers in Honor of Professor Hwang-Cherng Gong on his Seventieth Birthday, Language and Linguistics Monograph Series No. W-4, Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, Taipei (2004). pp. 745-767.
  • F. K. Li's Contributions to Tibetan Studies: a Summary and Critical Assessment", in Language and Linguistics Monograph Series No. W-2, Essays in Chinese Historical Linguistics: Festschrift in Memory of Professor Fang-kuei Li on his Centennial Birthday. Taipei and Seattle: Academia Sinica and the University of Washington. 2005 .pp.1-8
  • "The Huang-Xiao Dialects in the Light of Migration History", in Yinshi xinlun: Essays in Honor of Professor Shao Rongfen on his eightieth Birthday. Beijing: Xueyuan, 2005, pp.325-343.
  • "Reflections on the Shouwen Fragments," in The Chinese Rime Tables -Linguistic Philosophy and Historical-Comparative Phonology. Ed. by David P. Branner. Amsterdam and Philiadelphia: John Benjamins. pp. 99-122.
  • "Zhang Linzhi on the Yunjing", in The Chinese Rime Tables -Linguistic Philosophy and Historical-Comparative Phonology. Ed. by David P. Branner. Amsterdam and Philiadelphia: John Benjamins. pp. 123-149.
  • "Convergence Testing in Common Sound Systems of the Yangtze Watershed", Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics 1.1 (2006), pp. 145-168.
  • "Two Notes on Tang-time transcriptions of Chinese", Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area 29.2 (2006), pp. 137-139.
  • "Aspects of Qingru Development in Modern Standard Chinese," Linguistic Studies in Chinese and Neighboring Languages: Festschrift in Honor of Professor Pang-hsin Ting on his 70th Birthday, Nankang; Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, 2006. vol. I, pp. 273-288.
  • "A Note on the Pronunciation of the Manchu Vowel e," Journal of the American Oriental Society 124.3 (2005), P. 403.
  • "Comparative Phonology of the Hu1izh1ou Dialects," Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics 2.1 (2007). pp. 47-134.
  • "Phonological Notes on a Variety of Eighteenth Century Standard Chinese", Monumenta Serica 55 (2007), pp. 439-446.
  • "On the Classification of the Yanzhou Dialects", Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics 2.2 (2008), pp. 85-91.
  • "Some Thoughts on a Review by Dr. Hsiao Su-ying", Chinese Studies 26 (2008), pp. 321-324.
  • "Comparative Phonology of the Y2anzh1ou Dialects", Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics 3.1 (2008), pp. 79-144.
  • "Franz Kühnert and the Phonetics of Late Nineteenth-Century Nankingese". Journal of the American Oriental Society 128.1 (2008), pp. 131-137.
  • "Glimpses of Hankou Phonological History". Journal of Chinese Linguistics 37.2 (2009), pp. 187-206.
  • "Retroflex Initials in the History of Southern Guanhua Phonology". Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale 38.1 (2009), pp. 125-162.
  • "On the Regional Origin of the Eighteenth-Century 'Dictionarium Sinico-Latinum'", Journal of the American Oriental Society 121.1 (2009), pp, 113-114.
  • "The Phonetic Values of the Tibetan Letter r in Tibeto-Chinese Transcriptional Texts from Dunhuang", Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area 32.2 (2009), pp. 103-106.
  • "The Phonology of Common Yangtze Watershed Mandarin", in Studies in Honor of Jerry Norman, edited by W. South Coblin and Anne O. Yue. Institute of Chinese Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 2010. pp. 157-183.

Reviews:

  • William S.Y. Wang, CLIBOC: Chinese Linguistics Bibliography on Computer. AA 76.2 (1974), p. 458.
  • James A. Matisoff, The Loloish Tonal Split Revisited. JAOS 94.4 (1974), pp. 522-524.
  • Paul K. Benedict, Sino-Tibetan: A Conspectus. MS 30 (1972-73), pp. 635-42.
  • E.G. Pulleyblank, Middle Chinese. MS 36 (1984-85), pp. 211-227.
  • S. Robert Ramsey, The Languages of China, Princeton, 1987. JAOS 108.4 (1988), pp. 644-646.
  • Jerry Norman, Chinese, Cambridge Univ. Press., New York, 1988. JAOS 110.1 (1990), pp. 110-113.
  • E. G. Pulleyblank, Lexicon of Reconstructed Pronunciation in Early Middle Chinese, Late Middle Chinese, and Early Mandarin, Univ. of British Columbia Press, Vancouver, 1991. MS 41 (1993), pp. 299-315.
  • William H. Baxter: A Handbook of Old Chinese Phonology, Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs 64. Berlin/ New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 1992. MS 43 (1995), pp. 509-519.
  • Nicholas C. Bodman, Proto-Chinese and Sino-Tibetan, Chinese version, translated by Pan Wuyun and Feng Zheng. Peking: Zhonghua Shuju. 1995. JCL 24 (1996), pp. 391-5.
  • Ping Chen, Modern Chinese: History and Sociolinguistics, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. Anthropological Linguistics 42.1 (2000), pp. 122-24.
  • David P. Branner, Problems in Comparative Chinese Dialectology. The Classification of Miin and Hakka. Berlin/ New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 2000. T'oung Pao LXXXVIII (2002), pp. 198-210.
  • Gong, Hwang-cherng, Collected Papers on Sino-Tibetan Linguistics, Language and Linguistics Monograph Series Number C2-1, Taipei: Academia Sinica, 2002. Language and Linguistics 4.4 (2003), pp. 887-902.
  • Dicionário Português-Chinés/P2u-H4an c2id>i3an/Portuguese-Chinese Dictionary. By Michele Ruggieri (1543-1607) and Matteo Ricci (1552-1610). Ed. by John W. Witek, S.J. Ricci Institute for Chinese-Western Cultural History (University of San Francisco) and Biblioteca Nacional Portugal, Instituto Português do Oriente, 2001. Ming Studies 56 (2007), pp. 106-111.