The Aston Centre for Interdisciplinary Research into Language and Identity
(InterLand) and Institute for the Study of Language and Society (ISLS)



Confirmed plenary speakers
Professor Joan Beal, University of Sheffield
Professor Sylvie Dubois, Louisiana State University
Professor Yaron Matras, University of Manchester

Aston University, 7th  10th July 2011

Regional varieties have become an important contributor to identity construction processes, and an increasingly important issue for the individual and the community in late Modernity: the individual is under constant and increasing pressure to define who s/he is and has to choose from an ever growing pool of possibilities to construct social identity in an increasingly globalized world, which is perceived as incomprehensively complex. By referring to what is seen as traditional regional language, dialect and culture, localizing oneself seems to be a viable way out of this dilemma. This should have stabilizing effects on lesser used varieties, which have been facing a gradual process of language shift and divergence towards dominant contact languages over the hundred years. Unfortunately, at the same time, modern life does not so much require knowledge of regional varieties as of standard languages and a good command of English as the global lingua franca. How can an upwardly mobile individual combine the requirements of modern life with identity construction on a regional scale if they so choose? What are the linguistic consequences for lesser used varieties and their respective contact languages? The conference organisers welcome papers focusing on multilingualism and language contact on a world wide level.

Focussing on the individual speaker and the speech community which is created by the use of language(s) as social practice, the conference organizers welcome papers and posters on the following fields of research in any language variety (the conference is not restricted to the Anglophone world):

 Language contact between a lesser used regional variety and a dominant standard language.
 Identity and regional varieties;
 Indexicality and enregisterment;
 Variation and style;
 Postvernacular linguistic and cultural practices;
 Emblematic language use and language mixing;
 Lesser used regional varieties and the Internet;
 Regional varieties and linguistic landscapes;
 New approaches to dialectology.

Oral presentations will be 20 minutes in length, followed by 10 minutes for discussion. Dedicated time and space will also be allocated for poster presentations. Abstracts (up to 300 words) should be submitted by e-mail attachment (Word files) to [log in to unmask] Please submit two files, one containing the abstract and details of the author(s) (name(s), affiliation, email address) and one containing an anonymous abstract. Under the title for the abstract, please give four keywords which summarise the paper/poster. In the body of your email please specify whether the abstract is for a poster or paper presentation. Further information about the dimensions of posters will be available online shortly.
The deadline for submission of abstracts is 20th February 2011

The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: