Professor of the Graduate Institute of Linguistics of the National Taiwan University.

Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Hawaii

Specialization :

Discourse Analysis
P ragmatics
Cognitive Linguistics


As an “island-hopper,” I was born and raised in Taiwan, got my Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of Hawaii, and started my teaching career at the University of Puerto Rico. I returned to Taiwan after having been away from “home” for almost 20 years because of the opportunity to join the Graduate Institute of Linguistics of the National Taiwan University, upon the founding of the program. This change of working environment means a great deal to me, personally as well as professionally. Working with the spoken data from a functional perspective enables me to witness and record, via the creation of linguistic corpuses, the actual use of languages – both the Chinese languages as well as the Formosan languages used in Taiwan nowadays.

Besides discourse pragmatics, I am also interested in syntax and semantics, with the ultimate goal of probing into the area of cognitive linguistics. I have attempted to explore the mystery of language and cognition by the linguistic manifestation of metaphorical extension and the grammaticalization process. My recent research in cross-cultural pragmatics further convinces me that metaphor being an important language device that reflects the cognitive source of human thought, cross-linguistic differences can be studied via conceptual metaphors.