Natasha Abner

Assistant Professor

Department of Linguistics

Montclair State University



I'm an Assistant Professor in the Linguistics Department at Montclair State University and head of the Sign Language & Multi-Modal Communication Lab.

My research focuses on the grammatical structure of human language, with a particular emphasis on the structural properties of signed languages. I am interested in how modality of production and perception does and does not affect language structure. Thus, I ask what properties signed languages have because they're signed but also what properties signed languages have because they're language. I am also interested in issues of language and cognition as well as language development and emergence in individuals and communities, which I am currently investigating through the lens of homesign and Nicaraguan Sign Language.

In fall 2017, I will be joining the Linguistics Department at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

"It is so much easier to believe than to think; it is astounding how much more believing is done than thinking." - James Kemper