Aaron Michael Butts (PhD University of Chicago, 2013) joined the Department of Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations as Lector of Semitics in 2010 and was promoted to Senior Lector in 2013. His research focuses on the dialectology and reconstruction of the Semitic language family. Among the Semitic languages, he specializes in Aramaic (including Syriac) and Classical Ethiopic. He also works secondarily in Arabic, Old South Arabian, and Northwest Semitic more broadly (Hebrew, Ugaritic, Phoenician, etc.). Publications in the field of Semitic linguistics include:
In the Spring of 2013, Dr. Butts co-convened the North American Conference on Afroasiatic Linguistics (NACAL 41) at Yale University. The theme for this conference was ‘Afroasiatic Languages in Contact’. A number of papers from the conference will be included in a volume on Semitic Languages in Contact that he is currently editing (to be published by Brill in the series Studies in Semitic Languages and Linguistics [SSLL]).
Alongside his research in Semitic linguistics, Dr. Butts has interests in the history and literature of Christianity in the Near East, especially Syriac and Ethiopic as well as Arabic. Publications in this field include:
He was also a co-editor with S. P. Brock, G. A. Kiraz, and L. Van Rompay of the Gorgias Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Syriac Heritage (Piscataway: Gorgias Press, 2011).
Current projects include: 1. a linguistic analysis of contact-induced changes in Syriac due to Greek; 2. a syntax and chrestomathy of Classical Syriac, to be published by Ugarit-Verlag in the series Lehrbücher orientalischer Sprachen (LOS); 3. (with L. Van Rompay) a catalogue of the Ethiopic collection at Duke University; 4. an edition of the Classical Ethiopic version of the History of Joseph, to be included in a volume with the Syriac (ed. K. Heal) and the Arabic (ed. J. Witztum) versions, to be published by Brepols in the series Corpus Christianorum Series Apocryphorum (CCSA).
For further information, see http://pantheon.yale.edu/~ab949/.
Most of Butts’ articles can be downloaded at http://yale.academia.edu/AaronButts.