Dr Iris Bachmann

Iris Bachmann
Curator Latin American Published Collections
Modern Language Studies and Linguistics / Spanish and Portuguese; Languages in Latin America and the Caribbean
Related Offices
Research Fellow in Portuguese Linguistics at the University of Oxford

Dr Iris Bachmann is Curator of the Latin American Published Collections and has a background of teaching and research in universities across Europe and the Americas. As an academic, Iris has conducted research on Iberoromance languages including Creole languages. Her focus is on language in its concrete historical and social manifestations with special expertise in language practices in the Americas and in the Caribbean. A career change for family reasons combined with her passion for libraries as places of knowledge and learning led Iris to the British Library, where she is bringing academic expertise and networks to her collections and beyond.

Iris has published on the history of Creole Studies and Papiamentu, a creole language spoken in the ABC islands. In her research into sound and language practices in audio-visual media she produced another set of publications and turned her interest to the current project tentatively titled ‘Archive(d) Voices: Changing Perceptions of Language in the Age of Recording’.

Iris Bachmann is a Research Fellow in Portuguese Linguistics at the University of Oxford, where you can see a more detailed research profile.



  • In preparation: Creoles becoming Languages: A History of Creole Studies (London: Palgrave Macmillan) [revised and expanded edition of my German book (2005)].
  • Die Sprachwerdung des Kreolischen. Eine diskursanalytische Untersuchung am Beispiel des Papiamentu (Tübingen: Narr, 2005)

Selected articles and book chapters

  • ‘Planeta Brasil: language practices and the construction of space in Brazilian TV abroad’, Language ideologies and media discourse: Texts, Practices, Policies. Edited by Sally Johnson and Tommaso M. Milani (London: Continuum, 2010), 81-100
  • ‘El Papiamentu en los estudios criollos: una topografía de la concepción del lenguaje’, Revista Internacional de Lingüística Iberoamericana 13, 2009, 215-32
  • ‘Planeta Brasil: prácticas de lenguaje y la construcción del espacio en la televisión brasilera en el extranjero’, Signo y Seña 20, 2008, 107-125. [Revised Spanish version of book chapter in Johnson and Milani 2010]
  • Negertaaltje or Volkstaal: The Papiamentu Language at the Crossroads of Philology, Folklore and Anthropology’ (PDF format), Indiana 24, 2007, 87-105
  • ‘Las lenguas criollas en la historia de la lingüística: crónica desde los márgenes’, Sprachgeschichten und Sprachgeschichtsschreibung. Edited by Wulf Oesterreicher & Jochen Hafner (Tübingen: Narr, 2007), 313-326
  • Colonial Exchange: Creole Languages between Missionary Linguistics and Romance Philology’, Papia. Revista Brasileira de Estudos Crioulos e similares 16, 2006, 81-95
  • ‘Natürlich Sprache: Jacques Derrida und Leo Spitzer über Muttersprache’ [on the concept of mother tongue], Lateinamerika: Orte und Ordnungen des Wissens. Festschrift für Birgit Scharlau. Edited by Sabine Hofman & Monika Wehrheim. Tübingen: Narr, 2004, 193-207
  • ‘Übersetzen in Kreolsprachen: Predigten, Preziosen, Prestige’ [on translating into Creole languages], Übersetzen in Lateinamerika. Edited by Birgit Scharlau. Tübingen: Narr, 2002, 203-225



Extensive collections from the Americas and Oceania