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The life and afterlife of sociolinguistic ideas: Colloquium Introduction
(Making Universities Matter)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3997-1149
Stockholm University . (Centre for Research on Bilingualism)
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This colloquium interrogates the production, dissemination and uptake of sociolinguistic ideas, and the processesthroughwhich they are entextualized. The papers included engage with the ways in which such ideas are forged, enter into circulation, possibly go viral, and become tied to various interests. Particularly, the colloquium discusses how and why concepts like ‘polylingual,’ ‘metrolingualism,’ ‘translanguaging,’ ‘semilingualism,’ ‘plain language,’ and ‘intercultural communication’ have gained legitimacy and purchase in scholarship and, occasionally, in other sectors of society. Engaging broadly with the history of ideas, the colloquium centres on how scientific knowledge can give rise to concepts, capable of emigrating from the spaces where they were formulated to materialize eventually as institutional regimes (see Foucault 1972, 137ff.). Adding sociological rigor to the study of such processes, we adopt Bourdieu’s (e.g. 1990) pivotal concept of fieldsto compute ‘spaces’ as arenas of discursive exchange and struggle, populated by agents with particular interests and agendas.  This lens underscores that the research enterprise involves struggles over classification, and that the ideas over which struggles are waged are likewise laden with value and interests. By targeting such exchanges, the colloquium inexorably taps into the shifting visions of morality and justice that underwrite much of sociolinguistic thinking. The lens opted for also provides a means for examining the proliferation of ideas within and across fields, for instance, from the academic field to the bureaucratic or legislative field, and vice versa. Thus, the matter at issue is not to decide whether certain concepts are ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ ‘accurate or inaccurate,’ ‘effective’ or ‘ineffective,’ but rather to understand the social processes through which ideas gain salience and legitimacy in sociolinguistics and beyond. By treating the sociolinguistic conceptual inventory accordingly, paraphrasing Bourdieu (1990), we hope to advance a reflexive sociolinguistics, capable of understanding the social life and afterlife of its own ideas. In this vein, the colloquium seeks to create a vantage point for capturing sociolinguistic knowledge production and its effects. 

References

Bourdieu, P. 1990. In Other Words. Essays Towards a Reflexive Sociology. Cambridge: Polity.

Foucault, Michel. 1972. The Archaeology of Knowledge. And the Discourse on Language. London: Tavistock.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics History
Research subject
History of Science, Technology and Environment
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-231893OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-231893DiVA, id: diva2:1230648
Conference
Sociolinguistics Symposium 22
Funder
VINNOVA, 2015-04473Available from: 2018-07-04 Created: 2018-07-04 Last updated: 2018-07-04

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Salö, Linus
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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf