Dr Kerri Russell

Departmental Lecturer in Japanese Linguistics

Oriental Studies

Kerri received her PhD from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in 2006. Before coming to Oxford in 2009, she was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona, and has also taught Japanese and linguistics courses at Hawai‘i Pacific University and the University of Hawai‘i.


Kerri’s research is mainly concerned with the origins and development of the Japonic language family, which consists of the varieties of Japanese spoken in Japan and the Ryukyuan islands. She has also worked on Ainu, Middle Korean, and several Altaic languages spoken in East Asia.

From January 2009, Kerri moved to Oxford as a postdoctoral researcher on the “Verb Semantics and Argument Realization in Pre-modern Japanese” project, which involved grammatical analyses of pre-modern Japanese texts and the creation of a corpus of Old Japanese (the language of 7th-8th century Japan). She continues to work on the development of the Oxford Corpus of Old Japanese, which is a long-term research project which aims to develop a comprehensive annotated digital corpus of all extant texts in Japanese from the earliest attested stage of the Japanese language.

Kerri is a member of three research projects based at the National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics (NINJAL): NINJAL Diachronic Corpus project, The Japanese Lexicon: A Rendaku Encyclopedia, and A Diachronic Contrastive Study of Japanese Interrogatives. She is also an organizer of the HiCor Network (TORCH) at Oxford.


  • 2011-Present. Frellesvig, Bjarke, Stephen W. Horn, Kerri L. Russell, and Peter Sells. The Oxford Corpus of Old Japanese. http://vsarpj.orinst.ox.ac.uk/corpus/corpus.html
  • 2015a. Russell, Kerri L. and Peter Sells. "The syntax of mood constructions in Old Japanese: A corpus based study." Proceedings from the International Conference on Historical Linguistics 21. pp. 281-302. John Benjamins.
  • 2015b. Horn, Stephen Wright and Kerri L Russell. "The Oxford Corpus of Old Japanese." In 「コーパスと日本語史研究」 Corpus-Based  Historical Studies  in Japanese. pp. 177-195. ひつじ書房 Hituzi Syobo Publishing , Tokyo.
  • 2013a. Russell, Kerri L. "Motion verbs in Eastern Old Japanese: A corpus based study." 琉球諸語と古代日本語に関する比較言語学的研究/Workshop on Old Japanese and Ryukyuan Languages. University of Kyoto.
  • 2013b. Frellesvig, Bjarke, Stephen W. Horn, Kerri L. Russell, and Peter Sells. "Provisional and Conditional Clauses in Old Japanese." In Ozge, Umut, ed. Proceedings of the 8th Workshop on Altaic Formal Linguistics. MIT Working Papers in Linguistics, 67, 65-78.
  • 2012a.  Russell, Kerri L. "Noun incorporation in Old Japanese (上代日本語における名詞抱合について)". 通時コーパスと日本語史研究 Corpus based studies of Japanese language history, 51-52 Tokyo: NINJAL.
  • 2012b. Russell, Kerri L. and Stephen Wright Horn. "Verb semantics and argument realization in pre-modern Japanese: A corpus based study." Chung-Hwa Buddhist Journal, 25, 129-148.
  • 2012c. Horn, Stephen W. and Kerri L. Russell. "Null pronouns in selected subordinate clauses in Old Japanese." Acta Linguistica Hafniensia: International Journal of Linguistics, 44:2, 207-226.
  • 2010. Frellesvig, Bjarke, Stephen W. Horn, Kerri L. Russell, and Peter Sells. "Verb Semantics and Argument Realization in Pre-Modern Japanese: A Preliminary Study of Compound Verbs in Old Japanese." Gengo Kenkyū, 138, 25-65.
  • 2006. Russell, Kerri L. A reconstruction and morphophonemic analysis of proto-Japonic verbal morphology. PhD Dissertation. University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.
  • 2003a. Russell, Kerri. "Contraction and Monophthongization in Old Japanese." in Osada Toshiki and Alexander Vovin (eds.). Nihongo keitōron no genzai/Perspectives on the Origins of the Japanese Language. pp. 511-539. Kyoto: Nichibunken.
  • 2003b. Russell, Kerri. "Review of A Descriptive Grammar of Early Old Japanese Prose by John R. Bentley." (Brill's Japanese Studies Library)