Representations of Language Attrition and Loss in Film, Literature, and Popular Culture

Country: USA

City: Baltimore

Abstr. due: 30.09.2016

Dates: 23.03.17 — 26.03.17

Area Of Sciences: Humanities;

Organizing comittee e-mail: galorenz@temple.edu

Organizers: NeMLA

 

The theme of the conference complies with the outcomes of a report produced by the Modern Languages Association (MLA), our umbrella organization, in light of the tragic events of 9/11. This tragedy, whose effects still reverberate across US society, also brought into relief the difficulties in the U.S. of communicating with and comprehending other cultures and languages. As a consequence, different initiatives emerged at the Congressional level including legislative proposals to address the deficit in language and international expertise.

The MLA report reads, “In the context of globalization and in the post–9/11 environment, then, the usefulness of studying languages other than English is no longer contested… At one end, language is considered to be principally instrumental, a skill to use for communicating thought and information. At the opposite end, language is understood as an essential element of a human being’s thought processes, perceptions, and self-expressions; and as such it is considered to be at the core of translingual and transcultural competence. While we use language to communicate our needs to others, language simultaneously reveals us to others and to ourselves. Language is a complex multifunctional phenomenon that links an individual to other individuals, to communities, and to national cultures.”

Hence, in the spirit of this scholarly inquiry, we welcome debates that may help us to better understand and embrace the United States’ vast cultural and linguistic diversity, as well as that of the rest of the world.

Conference Web-Site: http://www.buffalo.edu/nemla/convention.html