Photo of Xiang, Xuehua

Xuehua Xiang, PhD

Associate Professor, Head and Director of Undergraduate Studies

Linguistics | Chinese

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Building & Room:

University Hall 1508


601 S. Morgan Street

Office Phone:

(312) 996-5588

Drop-in Hour: Tuesday and Thursday 1:00-2:00 PM (Fall 2021)

Building & Room:

Via Zoom or in person at UH 1508


Xuehua Xiang is Associate Professor of Linguistics. Her research examines language in context focusing on the interplay of social structures, communication and language. On the micro level, she has researched on pragmatic markers, question particles, classifiers, and pronouns in Mandarin, English and Lingao (Tai-Kadai) based on naturally occurring data. On the macro level, primarily from cross-linguistic and cross-cultural perspectives, she has examined conversational narratives, branding and naming practices, television and radio interviews as well as second language learning phenomena. Her research, while diverse in focus, centralizes on her conviction of the importance of naturalistic data for linguistic theorizing and viewing language as a meaning-making system situated in multimodal systems and in social environments. Her work has appeared in journals such as Journal of Pragmatics, Text & Talk, Lingua, Written Communication, Chinese Language and Discourse, Language Sciences, Names, Discourse, Context & Media, and in edited volumes on Chinese language education and Chinese discourse studies.

Selected Publications


Xiang, Xuehua. (forthcoming) Language, multimodal interaction and transaction. Studies of a Southern Chinese Marketplace. John Benjamins. Link 

Strauss, Susan. Feiz, Parastou, & Xiang, Xuehua. (2018). Grammar, Meaning, and Concepts: A Discourse-Based Approach to English Grammar of English. Routledge. Link

Translated works 

Wei-Ting. (2021). Who Cares… Wei-Ting Wu’s Story (Chinese-English Bilingual Edition) 誰稀罕…烏蔚庭的故事(中英雙語版). (X. Xiang Trans.) (J. Wu Ed.). Taipei: Ehgbooks. 934 pages. Link

Selected articles  

Xiang, Xuehua. (2019). A Comparative Study of the Restrictive Markings of Mandarin Jiù, Cái, and Zhǐ. In Columbia School Linguistics in the 21 Century, edited by N. Stern, R. Otheguy, W. Reid, & J. Ruggle. John Benjamins.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2019). Personal Pronouns in Chinese Discourse. In Chris Shei (Ed.) The Routledge Handbook of Chinese Discourse Analysis. Taylor and Francis.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2012a). External information processing vs. property-ascertaining: A discourse-pragmatic study of three yes/no question particles in Shishan (Hainan Island, China). Text and Talk 32 (2): 255-280.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2012b). Linguistic and cultural characteristics of the domain names of the top-fifty most-visited websites in the US and in China: A cross-linguistic study of domain Names and e-branding. Names: A Journal of Onomastics 60 (4): 210-219.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2011). Constraint reality: Linguistic expressions of restrictivity and emotive stances: A discourse-pragmatic study of utterance-final lah in Shishan (Hainan Island, China). Lingua 121 (8): 1377-1400.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2009). Addition and reassessment: Preverbal particle ah in Shishan (Hainan Island, China). Text and Talk 29 (1): 99-124.

Strauss, Susan and Xiang, Xuehua. (2009). Discourse particles: Where cognition and interaction intersect – The case of final particle ey in Shishan dialect (Hainan Island, P.R. China). Journal of Pragmatics 41: 1287-1312.

Strauss, Susan and Xiang, Xuehua. (2006). The writing conference as a locus of emergent agency. Written Communication 23: 355-396.

Xiang, Xuehua. (2003). Multiplicity of self in public discourse: A comparative analysis of the use of personal references in two sports radio shows in the U.S. and China. Language Sciences, 25, 489-514.

Research Currently in Progress

I'm currently working on an archive of texts and photographs by missionaries to China in the 1900s-1920s. I'm interested in how different symbolic systems (image vs. text, caption vs. narrative, Chinese vs. English) interact to create cultural concepts and subsequently alter perceptions of cultural values in unique times and places.