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French Linguist to Deliver Phi Beta Kappa Lifto Amundson Lecture

VERMILLION, S.D. – Lawrence Kuiper, Ph.D., will present “Let’s Table This: What a Linguistic Corpus Can Tell Us About Culture” at the 30th annual Phi Beta Kappa Lifto Amundson Lecture, which is presented each spring at the University of South Dakota’s College of Arts & Sciences. The talk is free and open to the public and will be hosted April 18 at 4:30 p.m. in Beacom Hall 133.

Kuiper is an associate professor of French, academic director for International Student Success and coordinator of the Food Studies Certificate Program at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. His research focuses on using linguistic corpora to consider how language about food is used and perceived in English and French. Following Kuiper’s talk, Alpha Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa will initiate new members to the nation’s oldest academic honor society.

The Lifto Amundson Lecture was established in 1988 by Marjorie Lifto Amundson and her son, Loren H. Amundson, M.D., of Sioux Falls. Marjorie Lifto was among the first members of USD’s Alpha Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, which was formed in 1926. Loren Amundson (USD School of Medicine, 1954; Distinguished Alumni Award, 2004) was also elected to membership in the chapter. Loren died late last month at the age of 87. He was the founding chair of the Department of Family Medicine at the University of South Dakota School of Medicine (now Sanford School of Medicine), served as the initial director of the South Dakota Office of Rural Health, and was a member of advisory boards for a number of national medical and health-related groups and organizations.

The Lifto Amundson Lectureship allows Phi Beta Kappa to bring distinguished speakers from the liberal arts and sciences disciplines to visit USD each year and share their research and perspectives with the community. Kuiper is co-hosted by the French & Francophone Studies Program and the Department of Modern Languages & Linguistics at USD. He will meet with language students and guest lecture in classes such as Linguistic Diversity in the Francophone World during his visit. The lecture takes place in association with the ceremony during which USD’s Alpha Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest academic honor society, initiates new student members who have excelled in the traditional liberal arts and sciences. USD is the only institution of higher learning in the state granted a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.

For more information about the talk or Phi Beta Kappa, please contact the USD College of Arts & Sciences, 605-677-5221.


USD's College of Arts & Sciences offers students a top-notch undergraduate liberal arts education in the humanities, social sciences and sciences as well as graduate programs that have earned USD distinction as a research university by the Carnegie Foundation. The college's more than 22,000 alumni include famous journalists, Hollywood screenwriters, novelists, a Nobel Prize winner, South Dakota governors, attorneys, physicians, justices of the state Supreme Court, distinguished university faculty and international humanitarians.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News