CfP: Sixth Ghent Colloquium on Afrikaans

16-18 October 2019, Ghent, Belgium

The Ghent research group on Afrikaans and the study of South Africa organises an annual colloquium on the linguistics and literature of Afrikaans. The overall theme of the linguistic component of this year’s edition is ‘Language Variation in Afrikaans’, broadly construed (i.e. including geographical, social, stylistic, etc. variation in present-day Afrikaans as well as diachronic variation). The plenary speaker is Gerald Stell (The Polytechnic University of Hong Kong), who will present new research on Namibian Afrikaans.
The conference languages are Afrikaans and Dutch.

Call for Papers:

We invite abstracts for original research papers on any aspect of language variation in Afrikaans, past or present. Possible topics include — but are definitely not limited to:

– the relations between Standard Afrikaans and other varieties of the language;
– the status, use and linguistic characteristics of Cape Afrikaans;
– the restandardisation debate;
– the emergence of new sociolects;
– the use of Afrikaans outside South Africa and the properties of expat Afrikaans;
– the use of Afrikaans in specific text types or contexts.

In addition, we also welcome papers dealing with variation along geographical, social, ethnic, stylistic, etc. lines in the use or properties of specific lexical or grammatical items or phenomena, as well as papers which shed new light on the diachrony of Afrikaans in general or of specific linguistic phenomena.

Please send your anonymous abstract as an attachment in pdf- and doc(x)-format to afrikaans@UGent.be by April 15 and include name(s) and affiliation(s) in the body of the abstract. The maximal length is 500 words, including examples and references. Abstracts are preferably in Afrikaans or Dutch. Abstracts in English are welcome, too, but please note that speakers will be expected to give the actual presentation in Afrikaans or Dutch.

Notification of acceptance will be sent by mid-May.

CFP: Novel Perspectives on Communication Practices in Antiquity Towards a Historical Social-Semiotic Approach

03-05 Oct-2019, Ghent, Belgium

We are delighted to invite interested scholars and colleagues to participate in the opening event of the ERC-project ‘Everyday writing in Graeco-Roman and Late Antique Egypt. A socio-semiotic study of communicative variation’ (2018-2023).

The main aim of the conference is to explore to what ex­tent it is possible and desirable to found a discipline such as historical social-semiotics, parallel to historical socio-linguistics. This novel, interdisciplinary approach is particularly relevant for ‘everyday’ documentary texts: since these texts represent autographs, their external characteristics can also be brought into interpretation. Some of the characteristics to be considered as expressions of social meaning (functioning as ‘semiotic resources’) are – but are not limited to – writing material, document format, and language choice.
The conference will mainly focus on documentary texts from the Mediterranean region, roughly spanning the period from the first millennium BCE to the first millennium CE.

Confirmed speakers include:

James Clackson (Cambridge)
Mark Depauw (Leuven)
Jean-Luc Fournet (Paris)
Antonella Ghignoli (Rome)
Tonio Sebastian Richter (Berlin)
Petra Sijpesteijn (Leiden)

Call for Papers:

Please submit a one-page English abstract to evwrit@ugent.be by April 30, 2019. Notification of acceptance will be given by June 1, 2019.

A full version of the CfP can be found here: http://www.evwrit.ugent.be/events/

CFP: European Symposium Series on Multimodal Communication

09-10-Sep-2019, Leuven, Belgium

The 6th European and 9th Nordic Symposium on Multimodal Communication aims to provide a multidisciplinary forum for researchers from different disciplines who study multimodality in human communication as well as in human-computer interaction. The 2019 edition of the MMSYM symposium is organized by the MIDI research group (Multimodality, Interaction & Discourse) based at the Linguistics Department of the University of Leuven, Belgium.

The symposium follows up on a tradition established by the Swedish Symposia on Multimodal Communication held from 1997 until 2000, and continued by the Nordic Symposia on Multimodal Communication held from 2003 to 2012. Since 2013 the symposium has acquired a broader European dimension, with editions held in Malta, Estonia, Ireland, Denmark and Germany. This year the symposium will be held in Belgium for the first time.

The past ten years have witnessed a spectacular increase in research on multimodal communication from a variety of perspectives and (sub)disciplines, including (corpus) linguistics, conversation analysis, human-computer interaction research, and (critical) discourse analysis. This has not only led to a range of novel insights into the dynamics of embodied and situated communication (see e.g. Müller et al. 2013, 2014 for an overview), but has also been the catalyst for the development and implementation of methodological innovations, including the use of high-quality (including multi-angle) video recordings, the integration of input from motion capturing systems, biometric sensor systems and eye-tracking into a multimodal analysis pipeline, the exploration of (semi-)automatic annotation techniques for large-scale corpora, and the implementation of multimodal interaction in computer interfaces. Despite the rapid development of the fields involved, many questions still need to be resolved and new challenges emerge for research on multimodal communication. The MMSYM symposium aims to provide a forum for the discussion of these challenges.

Confirmed invited speakers:

Federico Rossano
University of California San Diego, Cognitive Science – Comparative Cognition Lab

Lindsay Ferrara
NTNU Trondheim, Department of Language & Literature

Topics:
The 2019 edition of the MMSYM Symposium zooms in on the theme of Multimodal Interaction, with a specific focus on corpus-based and experimental approaches to multimodal interaction in spoken and signed language. Recent corpus-linguistic as well as experimental work has provided evidence for multimodal patterns in face-to-face communication as the most basic form of human interaction. The MMSYM aims to provide a forum for this particular line of research.

Apart from this specific theme, the symposium is open for contributions covering all aspects of multimodal communication, including but not limited to:

Speech, gestures and signs in human communication
– Intercultural aspects of multimodal behaviour
– Multimodality aspects of language acquisition (both L1 and L2)
– Multimodal human computer interaction and conversational agents
– Multimodal systems for sign language users
– Multimodal health communication
– Multimodal communication, communication disorders and communication support
– Multimodal dialogue systems
– Multimodal corpora
– Sign language corpora
– Annotation schemes and tools for multimodal corpora
– Automatic recognition and interpretation of different modalities and their interaction
– Machine-learning techniques applied to multimodal data
– Evaluation methods for multimodal systems

Submission Guidelines:

We invite proposals for paper presentations of up to 500 words, including references. If relevant, links to multimedia clips that are made available online can be included in the abstract. All references to authors should be omitted for purposes of blind review.
Abstracts should be submitted as pdf files and sent to mmsym@kuleuven.be before 25 April 2019. Please make sure to add the following information in the body of that e-mail:

– names of authors
– title
– preferred presentation format (i.e. presentation or poster)

Important Dates:

– Deadline for abstract submissions: 25 April, 2019
– Notification of acceptance: 15 May, 2019
– Revised abstracts: 15 August, 2019
– Symposium dates: 9-10 September, 2019

2nd Call for Papers: Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF)

23-24 May-2019, Antwerp, Belgium

We are pleased to announce the next Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) conference held in Antwerp, Belgium, on May 23 and 24 2019. Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) workshop has established itself as the yearly venue for young psycholinguists (PhD students and postdocs). We welcome contributions related to all aspects of language processing and language acquisition, including, but not limited to, reading, text comprehension, word processing, learning, speech production, speech perception, etc.

2nd Call for Papers:

We are pleased to announce the next Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) conference held in Antwerp, Belgium, on May 23 and 24 2019.

Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) workshop has established itself as the yearly venue for young psycholinguists (PhD students and postdocs). More information will soon be available at https://www.uantwerpen.be/en/conferences/psycholinguistics-in-flanders/

You can submit your title and abstract via email to pif2019@uantwerp.be before March 15, 2019. We welcome contributions related to all aspects of language processing and language acquisition, including, but not limited to, reading, text comprehension, word processing, learning, speech production, speech perception, etc. The maximum length of the abstract is 400 words, including references.

Please let us know whether you prefer an oral or a poster presentation when you send us your abstract. For further information about the presentations: https://www.uantwerpen.be/en/conferences/psycholinguistics-in-flanders/call-for-abstracts/information-for-pres/

Invited speakers are Alice Foucart from University Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona) and Kim Van Dun from Hasselt University.

We offer a free pre-conference workshop on public speaking on May 23, but places are limited, so make sure you register early enough if you want to participate.

Other important dates to keep in mind:
– 10 April: notification of acceptance and registration will be open
– 30 April: deadline for registration

We are looking forward to receiving your contribution and to welcoming you in Antwerp in May!

Hanne Surkyn, Edwige Sijyeniyo, Dominiek Sandra, Sarah Bernolet and the Organizing Committee of PiF 2019

University of Antwerp
Computational linguistics and Psycholinguistics
Stadscampus L
Lange Winkelstraat 40-42
2000 Antwerp

CFP: Psycholinguistics in Flanders

We are pleased to announce the next Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) conference held in Antwerp, Belgium, on 23 and 24 May 2019. Psycholinguistics in Flanders (PiF) workshop has established itself as the yearly venue for young psycholinguists (PhD students and postdocs). We welcome contributions related to all aspects of language processing and language acquisition, including, but not limited to, reading, text comprehension, word processing, learning, speech production, speech perception, etc.

More information will soon be available at https://www.uantwerpen.be/en/conferences/psycholinguistics-in-flanders/

You can submit your title and abstract via email to pif2019@uantwerp.be before March 15, 2019. We welcome contributions related to all aspects of language processing and language acquisition, including, but not limited to, reading, text comprehension, word processing, learning, speech production, speech perception, etc. The maximum length of the abstract is 400 words, including references.

Invited speakers are Alice Foucart from University Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona) and Kim Van Dun from Hasselt University.

This year PiF will also organize a pre-conference workshop in which you can perfect your presentation skills.

We are looking forward to receiving your contribution and to welcoming you in Antwerp in May!

Hanne Surkyn, Edwige Sijyeniyo, Dominiek Sandra, Sarah Bernolet and the Organizing Committee of PiF 2019

University of Antwerp
Computational linguistics and Psycholinguistics
Stadscampus L
Lange Winkelstraat 40-42
2000 Antwerp

International Workshop on the L1 and L2 Acquisition of Information Structure

Call Deadline: 01-Feb-2019

Meeting Description:

The aim of this workshop is to gather researchers working on different aspects of the L1 and L2 acquisition of Information Structure in different languages, using experimental protocols or corpus research, to gain a better understanding of the development of Information Structure.

2nd Call for Papers:

In recent years, the study of Information Structure in child language has gained significant interest. Studies show that the accessibility level of referents influences children’s referential choices (Hendriks, Koster, & Hoeks, 2014; Hickmann & Hendriks, 1999) or word order (Narasimhan & Dimroth, 2008, 2018; Stephens, 2010; Schelletter and Leinonen; 2003). Children’s prosodic and syntactic choices to encode the topic and focus have also been studied in some detail (Arnhold, Chen, & Järvikivi, 2016; Chen, 2011; De Cat, 2009).

While some studies suggest that morphology and syntax are acquired before pragmatics and Information Structure (Schaeffer & Matthewson, 2005), others show that some of children’s constructions encode an adult-like Information Structure configuration: French and Italian children use dislocations to encode the topic of the utterance from the start(Belleti and Manetti, 2018; De Cat, 2007, 2009).

Children do not develop all aspects of Information Structure at the same rate. Dutch children acquire the intonation contour to mark topic before the contour for focus (Chen, 2011), and Portuguese children acquire the syntactic marking of focus while they still struggle with the computations required to interpret stress shift as a focus marker (Costa and Szendrői, 2006).

The study of L2 acquisition of Information Structure has also developed recently (Colonna et al., 2018; Park, 2018 among others), and reevaluates former findings. According to Fuller and Gundel (1987), the interlanguage of L2 learners is characterized by an early topic-prominent stage and a late subject-prominent stage, but recent research however suggests a transfer from L1 characteristics (Jin, 1994; Jung, 2004). Some authors consider that L2 learners have difficulties acquiring the syntax-pragmatic and Information Structure interface (Sorace & Filiaci, 2006; Alvaro, 2018). Some find that L2 learners, as they become more advanced, manage to acquire syntactic constructions with the appropriate Information Structure function (Reichle and Birdsong, 2013; Hughes, 2010; Dominguez and Arche, 2010; Donaldson, 2011a, 2011b)

The questions which can be addressed include, but are not restricted to:

– Which prosodic, morphologic or syntactic means are used by children to encode Information Structure? What is the developmental pattern of these means?
– Are some means to encode Information Structure (prosody vs syntax) acquired earlier than others?
– How does the division of labor between syntax/prosody and Information Structure in the target language impact on its acquisition?
– Are some aspects of Information Structure (referential vs. relational) easier to acquire by children?
– Are there early stages in L1 or L2 language development exhibiting more topic-prominent or subject-prominent characteristics?
– Which aspects of Information Structure are acquired in production before comprehension?

We invite you to submit proposals for 20-minute individual presentations. Abstracts should not exceed two pages in length, 12-point type, Times New Roman, single line spacing, 2.5cm (1 inch) margins, including examples and tables.

Abstracts should be submitted in PDF format via EasyChair: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=ais2019

Conference Website: https://www.arts.kuleuven.be/ling/is-acquisition/AIS2019

Keynote Speakers:

Aoju Chen (Utrecht Institute of Linguistics)
Carla Soares (Université Paris VIII)
Maria Lobo (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
Kriszta Szendrői (University College London)

27th Conference of the European Association for Computer Assisted Language Learning

28-31 August 2019, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium

First call for papers – EUROCALL 2019

We are very happy to announce that the 27th EUROCALL conference will be hosted by UCLouvain – in collaboration with KU Leuven – in Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium), from Wednesday 28 to Saturday 31 August 2019.
www.eurocall2019.be

The 2019 conference theme is CALL and complexity. We will collectively embrace the challenges expressed through the theme: the complexities of languages as such, the complexities of learning and teaching languages, and the added complexity that comes with doing so in technology-mediated contexts. We look forward to discussing all of these with the EUROCALL community!

Key thematic strands include:

CALL for social inclusion
CMC and telecollaboration
Corpora and language learning
Digital bi- and multi-literacies
Intelligent CALL (ICALL)
Mobile assisted language learning (MALL)
Natural language processing applications in CALL
Open Educational Resources and practices (incl. LMOOC)
Research trends in CALL
SLA principles in CALL
Task complexity in CALL
Teacher education and professional development in CALL
The complexity, accuracy, fluency (CAF) framework of proficiency in CALL (research and applications)
Virtual Reality and gamification in language learning

We welcome proposals from researchers and practitioners working in CALL in any areas relevant – but not restricted to – the proposed conference thematic strands. The conference language is English and all proposals for Papers, Symposia, European Projects, Workshops and Posters should ideally be submitted in English.

Important Dates

Call for papers Announcement starts November 2018
Submissions open December 2018
Submissions due 15 February 2019
Notification of acceptance 15 April 2019
Registration Online registration opens February/March 2019
Deadline for early-bird registration 15 May 2019
Deadline for presenters 01 June 2019
Deadline for normal registration 31 July 2019
Late registration starts 01 August 2019
Conference Preliminary programme online June 2019
Full programme online July 2019
Main conference 28-31 August 2019

Presentation categories include

  1. Individual papers

Papers should be submitted for 30-minute presentations. This timing allows for 20 minutes presenting, 5 minutes for questions, and 5 minutes for room changes.

Three types of papers may be given:

Research: papers focusing on a clearly specified research topic supported by a rationale, including a brief literature review. The thrust may be empirical or theoretical. The methodology should be clearly outlined as well as the actual or potential findings.

Research and Development: papers focusing on the development of pedagogies, programmes and projects in technology-rich environments. The research should be original and may emphasise practice rather than research.

Reflective Practice: practice-oriented papers dealing with the integration of technologies in different contexts and for different purposes. The reflection could take the form of evaluation or action-research. Proposals should include elements that are of relevance beyond the context of the practice described

  1. Symposia

Symposia consist of three or four papers on a similar topic, proposed and organised by a chairperson, and should normally address the conference theme. Sessions last for 90 minutes, with NO changeover during the symposium. The proposal should outline the purpose of the symposium, the names and institutions of the participants, with a sentence mentioning what aspect of the main problem that each will address.
Submissions for symposia from EUROCALL SIGs are particularly welcome, with a view to promoting their work to the conference delegates and encouraging participation in the SIGs. Current EUROCALL SIGs are: Teacher Education, Virtual Worlds and Serious Gaming, iCALL, CorpusCall, Computer Mediated Communication, Less-widely Taught Languages, Mobile-Assisted Language Learning, Graduate Students, LMOOC.

  1. European Projects

This year’s conference will again offer a forum for the showcasting and dissemination of EU-funded projects. Each project will be allocated a 30-minute slot, including questions.

  1. Posters

Since posters aim to attract attention to a particular project or research domain, they should mainly focus on work in progress. They may, however, report previous or preliminary findings. Posters should be clear, easy to read and attractively laid out. Submissions from advanced students are especially welcome in this category. A prize will be awarded for the best poster in two categories: PhD/Graduate student and Researcher.

  1. Pre-conference workshops

A limited number of pre-conference workshops will be organized on Wednesday 28 August in the morning. They can either last for 90 minutes or 3 hours. They typically involve a hands-on session, where participants have the opportunity to become familiar with the latest developments in relevant topic areas in language teaching and learning and tools associated with these. The proposal should include the intended duration of the workshop, its main purpose, and a brief outline of topics and activities covered, as well as technical requirements.

Format of abstracts

All presentation categories require the submission of an abstract that does not exceed 500 words, excluding the title, names and affiliations. You will have to select from a list of conference subthemes when submitting your abstract (submissions will be possible round mid-December), which will hopefully help us organize the programme around various thematic strands. You will also be asked to provide 3 or 4 keywords.

How to submit your proposal

The submission platform will be open round mid-December and detailed information will be included in the second call for papers.

Contact information

Any queries relating to the conference should be sent to eurocall2019@uclouvain.be

On behalf of the EUROCALL 2019 organizing team

Fanny Meunier (CECL, UCLouvain)
Conference Chair

Serge Bibauw (ITEC, KU Leuven & CENTAL, UCLouvain)
Frederik Cornillie (ITEC, KU Leuven)
Sylvie De Cock (CECL, UCLouvain & Université Saint-Louis)
Piet Desmet (ITEC, KU Leuven)
Cédrick Fairon (CENTAL, UCLouvain)
Thomas François (CENTAL, UCLouvain)
Germain Simons (Université de Liège)
Anaïs Tack (CENTAL, UCLouvain & ITEC, KU Leuven)
Julie Van de Vyver (CECL, UCLouvain)

International Workshop on the L1 and L2 Acquisition of Information Structure

25-26 April 2019, Leuven, Belgium

The aim of this workshop is to gather researchers working on different aspects of the L1 and L2 acquisition of Information Structure in different languages, using experimental protocols or corpus research, to gain a better understanding of the development of Information Structure.

Call for Papers:

In recent years, the study of Information Structure in child language has gained significant interest. Studies show that the accessibility level of referents influences children’s referential choices (Hendriks, Koster, & Hoeks, 2014; Hickmann & Hendriks, 1999) or word order (Narasimhan & Dimroth, 2008, 2018; Stephens, 2010; Schelletter and Leinonen; 2003). Children’s prosodic and syntactic choices to encode the topic and focus have also been studied in some detail (Arnhold, Chen, & Järvikivi, 2016; Chen, 2011; De Cat, 2009).

While some studies suggest that morphology and syntax are acquired before pragmatics and Information Structure (Schaeffer & Matthewson, 2005), others show that some of children’s constructions encode an adult-like Information Structure configuration: French and Italian children use dislocations to encode the topic of the utterance from the start(Belleti and Manetti, 2018; De Cat, 2007, 2009).

Children do not develop all aspects of Information Structure at the same rate. Dutch children acquire the intonation contour to mark topic before the contour for focus (Chen, 2011), and Portuguese children acquire the syntactic marking of focus while they still struggle with the computations required to interpret stress shift as a focus marker (Costa and Szendrői, 2006). Besides, research suggests that the comprehension of focus-marking intonation is acquired after production in child language (Szendrői, 2004; Gualmini et al., 2003; Paterson et al., 2003, but see Szendrői et al., 2018; Chen, 2010 for a different point of view).

The study of L2 acquisition of Information Structure has also developed recently (Colonna et al., 2018; Park, 2018 among others), and reevaluates former findings. According to Fuller and Gundel (1987), the interlanguage of L2 learners is characterized by an early topic-prominent stage and a late subject-prominent stage, but recent research however suggests a transfer from L1 characteristics (Jin, 1994; Jung, 2004). Some authors consider that L2 learners have difficulties acquiring the syntax-pragmatic and Information Structure interface (Sorace & Filiaci, 2006; Alvaro, 2018). Some find that L2 learners, as they become more advanced, manage to acquire syntactic constructions with the appropriate Information Structure function (Reichle and Birdsong, 2013; Hughes, 2010; Dominguez and Arche, 2010; Donaldson, 2011a, 2011b)

The questions which can be addressed include, but are not restricted to:

– Which prosodic, morphologic or syntactic means are used by children to encode Information Structure? What is the developmental pattern of these means?
– Are some means to encode Information Structure (prosody vs syntax) acquired earlier than others?
– How does the division of labor between syntax/prosody and Information Structure in the target language impact on its acquisition?
– Are some aspects of Information Structure (referential vs. relational) easier to acquire by children?
– Are there early stages in L1 or L2 language development exhibiting more topic-prominent or subject-prominent characteristics?
– Which aspects of Information Structure are acquired in production before comprehension?

We invite you to submit proposals for 20-minute individual presentations. Abstracts should not exceed two pages in length, 12-point type, Times New Roman, single line spacing, 2.5cm (1 inch) margins, including examples and tables.

Abstracts should be submitted in PDF format via EasyChair: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=ais2019

Conference Website:

https://www.arts.kuleuven.be/ling/is-acquisition/AIS2019

Keynote Speakers:

Aoju Chen (Utrecht Institute of Linguistics)
Carla Soares (Université Paris VIII)
Maria Lobo (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
Kriszta Szendrői (University College London)

The Syntagmatic Properties of Complementation Patterns: Accommodating Lexical and Grammatical uses of CTP-clauses

09-10 May 2019, Liège, Belgium

Recently, much attention has gone to lexical versus grammatical uses of complement-taking predicate (CTP) clauses (Boye & Harder 2007, 2012; Davidse et al. 2015; Van linden et al. 2016). Concomitant with this, the question has been raised whether these two uses should receive a different structural analysis. Complement clauses of lexical uses have been analysed as subordinate to the CTP-clause. In (1), e.g., the that-clause is typically analysed as the direct object of the main verb; in (4), the that-clause is traditionally analysed as an extraposed subject clause (cf. Quirk et al. 1985: 1224–1225; Huddleston and Pullum 2002: 1252–1254). Semantically, the complement clauses in (1) and (4) are viewed as only secondary. What is discursively primary is the specific emotional state conveyed by the CTP-clauses. The that-clauses represent the proposition presupposed in the processes of regretting (1) and feeling wonder (4) (Van linden et al. 2016).

(1) This was Rosie at her most Rosieish, and Liz only regretted that Pritch wasn’t there to appreciate just what she was up against. (WB)
(2) He spoke out after pro-Agreement parties were presented with the proposals. “I think it is clear that all of the issues have to be addressed,” he said. (WB)
(3) Alain Prost proved you can take time out and make a great comeback when he won his fourth world crown […]. There is no doubt the constant testing and pressure of racing takes a hell of a lot out of you. (WB)
(4) My kids got to see that my out-of-home life was far more complex and intense than they thought. It was a wonder to them that I get to do all this stuff. (IC)

While syntagmatically lexical uses of CTP-clauses are viewed as having ‘complementizing’ status, grammatical uses (2)-(3) are argued to show ‘modifying’ status (Boye & Harder 2007: 568), as the CTP cannot impose its semantic profile on the complement clause (cf. Langacker 1987: 309). The complement clauses contain the main information, and the main clauses are viewed as stance markers or interpersonal modifiers (McGregor 1997: 236). That is, (3) does not describe an act of not doubting. Rather, the impersonal CTP-clause there’s no doubt expresses the speaker’s epistemic stance towards the proposition coded by the that-clause; it signals a high degree of certainty (Davidse et al. 2015: 51). In (2), the personal CTP-clause I think functions as a speech act modifier, hedging the claim in the complement clause (cf. Nuyts 2009: 152). Both CTP-clauses are not part of what is asserted and hence cannot be challenged (Boye & Harder 2007: 573).

This workshop aims to focus on functional approaches towards complementation patterns, and invites contributions discussing the following questions:

– What makes CTP-clauses prone to shift from complementizing to modifying uses? Which semantic types of complement construction (e.g. factive constructions?) do not allow for this shift?
– Does the formal type of complement bear on the possibility of the CTP-clause to have either complementizing or modifying status?
– Does the semantic type of complement (e.g. State of Affairs vs. proposition) bear on the possibility of the CTP-clause to have either complementizing or modifying status?
– Do complement constructions with impersonal matrices (like (3)-(4)) manifest the same structural and functional parameters and shifts as personal CTP-clauses (2)?
– Do lexical uses of CTP-clauses always diachronically precede grammatical uses?
– What does prosody tell us about syntagmatic relationships?

Invited speakers: Kasper Boye (University of Copenhagen), Gunther Kaltenböck (University of Graz) and William McGregor (Aarhus University)
Organizers: An Van linden (Liège), Lieselotte Brems (Liège), Kristin Davidse (Leuven), Lieven Vandelanotte (Namur)

Call for Papers:

We invite 500-word abstracts addressing any of the above issues or related questions, for 20 minute-presentations (+ 10′ discussion time). Abstracts should be submitted to an.vanlinden@uliege.be, and should contain title, author’s name and affiliation.

Deadline: 20 December 2018
Notification: 15 February 2019

Discourse Perspectives on Technical Communication

03 Jun 2019 – 05 Jun-2019
Leuven, Belgium

The overarching aim of this panel session of DICOEN 2019 is to advance interdisciplinary research in the field of technical communication. More specifically, this session aims to bring together researchers, practitioners and professionals with an interest in discourse aspects of technical communication, addressing the role of language-in-use and the way in which language is embedded in technical communication settings. Unlike other institutional contexts such as politics, the media, the workplace, healthcare etc. (for other “real-world contexts”, see e.g. Tannen et al. 2018), the study of technical communication discourse has so far received little attention. This is somewhat surprising in view of our highly technologized society and the increasing importance of communicating effectively about technology in order to bridge the gap between users and (the functionalities of) technical products.
Discourse analysis encompasses a broad range of theories, topics and approaches for explaining language-in-use. In line with Bloor and Bloor (2015), we understand discourse as “symbolic human interaction in its many forms”, whether through spoken or written language or via non-linguistic resources such as image, symbol, sound, and gesture. We welcome contributions that address various discourse aspects in technical communication settings. Contributions may focus on a range of linguistic (grammatical, semantic, pragmatic, stylistic, rhetorical, conversational, narrative, intercultural, critical, cognitive discourse) and non-linguistic phenomena that may be used to examine the relationship between form and function in any technical communication genre across the product life cycle (e.g. instructions for use, technical procedures, warning notices, FAQs, training documents, …). For example, contributions may focus on how language is used to communicate and interact in technical communication contexts or on how semiotic modes such as text, speech, image, symbol, graphics, and sound interact in technical communication outputs. Given that discourse does not only refer to actual ‘text’ but may also incorporate the whole communicative act involving production and comprehension, viz. “peoples’ actions, interactions, values, beliefs, and uses of objects, tools and environments within social or institutional settings” (Gee 2011: 181), contributions may also address matters such as context, background information, conventions, or other shared knowledge between the writer and his (increasingly multicultural or international) audience (Bloor and Bloor 2015), hence widening the scope from micro to macro levels of discourse.

Theme session organizers:
Parthena Charalampidou (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki) and Birgitta Meex (KU Leuven) <birgitta.meex@kuleuven.be>

References:
Bloor, Meriel & Bloor, Thomas (2015). The Practice of Critical Discourse Analysis: An Introduction. London and New York: Routledge.
Gee, James P. (2011). How to do Discourse Analysis: A toolkit. London and New York: Routledge.
Tannen, Deborah, Hamilton, Heidi E. & Schiffrin, Deborah (eds.) (2018). The Handbook of Discourse Analysis. 2nd edition. Hoboken: Wiley-Blackwell.

Call deadline:
If you are interested in participating, please send a provisional title or topic proposal by 8 October. Abstracts of 400 words maximum are due by 15 November 2018, if the theme session is accepted.