New Media Linguistics


Social media has opened up a once solitary creative pursuit—personal language invention—to other inventors, but David J. Peterson has made it his profession. In addition to creating "Dothraki" and "High Valyrian" for the popular TV series Game of Thrones®, he has designed languages for Defiance, The Shannara Chronicles, The 100, and Emerald City. In his lecture, "New Media Linguistics: Developing Languages for Game of Thrones," Peterson will provide a rare glimpse into the fascinating process of language creation for fictional purposes, and will review the cultural, historical, linguistic, and aesthetic aspects that are involved in it.

With degrees in linguistics from Berkeley and UC San Diego, Peterson has closely studied the structures of languages world-wide and offers information and advice about creating naturalistic languages as an artform. His 2014 book Living Language Dothraki teaches fans how to speak this nomadic tongue, and in The Art of Language Invention (2015) he offers a rigorous manual of linguistic principles for would-be "conlangers.”

The lecture is free and open to the public. Reserved parking is available in the Library Lot.

Sponsored by the Humanities Project along with the Neilly Lecture Series, River Campus Libraries, and the Sara Nainzadeh Fund.

For more information, please call 585-275-4461. Click here for more information.