Linguistics Scholar Elected to Prominent Fellowship - Humboldt State Now

Linguistics Scholar Elected to Prominent Fellowship

Victor Golla, Humboldt State University Professor of Anthropology, has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.

Professor Victor Golla, Dept. of Anthropology

This year 347 members have been named fellows because of their work advancing science. New Fellows will be presented at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the organization’s annual meeting in February. Founded in 1848, AAAS is the largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal, Science. The AAAS’s mission is to advance science and serve society through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, and more.

The AAAS names fellows in several sections, including medical sciences, astronomy, agriculture, education, and more. Golla is one of two scholars named to the society’s Linguistics and Language Science category. In selecting Golla, the society cited his “influential research on Native American languages, for invaluable contributions to the history of Native American linguistics and ethnography, and for outstanding service to the profession.”

In 2011, Golla published “California Indian Languages.” The milestone volume is the first encyclopedic reference book of all indigenous languages known to have existed in California before 1850. Published by UC Press, Golla’s unprecedented survey spans aboriginal languages in California, southern Oregon, areas of Nevada and parts of Baja California.

Begun in 2003, the book lays out in full detail the basic facts about every indigenous language of the California region, about 80 all told.

In 2013, the Linguistic Society of America named Golla’s book the 2013 Leonard Bloomfield Book Award recipient. According to the society, the annual award is granted to the foremost volume that contributes to the understanding of language and linguistics, through its “exemplary scholarship, enduring value, novelty, empirical import, conceptual significance, and clarity.” Golla’s book is only the fourteenth publication to have been honored with a Bloomfield award since its creation in 1990.

Golla has taught at Humboldt State since 1988, and was earlier affiliated with the University of Alberta, Columbia University in New York, and George Washington University and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Learn more about the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences at