PhD Student Position (65%, E13 TV-L, 3 years)


The Chair for Sinology with a focus on the Intellectual and Cultural History of China — Institute for Near Eastern and East Asian Languages and Civilizations — at FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg (Germany) invites applications for the position of a PhD student (f/m/d) with an interest in digital humanities and the language of modern science in China, in particular mathematics.

The position is part of the interdisciplinary project “The language of algorithmic mathematics” funded by the Alexander-von-Humboldt-Foundation. In cooperation with the Chair for Computational Corpus Linguistics and the Research Center for Mathematics of Data at FAU the PhD concerns the qualitative and quantitative analysis of the language of Chinese mathematical texts in a comparative perspective. A specific focus will lie on the analysis of texts after 1850, since after the Opium Wars there is an obvious tension between Western mathematics based upon algebraic symbols with logical proof schemes and an algorithmic style of mathematics written in natural language defended by traditionalists in China. Following the close reading of some original texts, an automated analysis of a corpus of Chinese algorithmic mathematical writings will be carried out to explore and quantify the formulaic character of the language used in such writings and make a comparison with the phraseology and metre of other literary genres. Based on a segmentation of the Chinese texts, methods from corpus linguistics, terminology extraction and literary stylometry will be tested and refined. The applicant will conduct research and provide support for the organization of conferences and project publications. He/she will also contribute to the development of innovative methods for the quantitative analysis and automatic identification of formulaic language in comparatively small text corpora.

The successful candidate is expected to have– a Master degree in Chinese studies, computational linguistics, or a similar discipline,– a strong interest in the role of natural language in algorithmic modes of expression,– excellent knowledge of the working languages English and Chinese,– experience with digital tools for corpus linguistics and solid programming skills (preferably in Python or R) are a plus.

Further information regarding the positions prerequisites as well as details on application can be found on the website FAUJobs.