CRITICS: research Jan Blommaert

*IPrA ipra at
Tue Jun 6 09:48:10 UTC 1995

Research Jan Blommaert
For CRITICS network

WHO? Jan Blommaert, doctor African studies, research director at
International Pragmatics Association Research Center, University of
Antwerp (Belgium).

PREVIOUS RESEARCH: Intercultural communication, both general-theoretical
and applied. General-theoretical: Jan Blommaert & Jef Verschueren (eds.),
The pragmatics of Intercultural and International Communication,
Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1991. Reflections on the concept of culture
and the way in which it is being used in scholarly discourse. Same line
of argument is continued in recent paper: Ideologien in interkultureller
Kommunikation, in Sprache und Literatur 1994. Applied work mainly on
North-South relations: Congo Crisis of 1960-1961 (analysis of letters
exchanged between Lumumba and Hammarskjoeld), political style in an
African political tradition (Tanzania). Various publications on the topic.

Other area of research: ideology and language in Tanzania. Book is in
preparation (State ideology and language, the politics of Swahili in
Tanzania), in which I investigate the way in which political ideology
penetrates various kinds of discourse: scientific work, popular
literature (and to a lesser extent, music), and everyday conversations
among intellectuals. I also try to reassess models of language planning
and language policy in the light of what was commonly missing in these
analyses: ideology. This is still my hobby.

MAIN WORK (at present): the discourse on immigrants and racism in
Belgium, together with Jef Verschueren. Accessible publications (most are
in Dutch) are: The Belgian migrant debate, in New Community 20/2 (1994)
and The rhetoric of tolerance, or what police officers are taught about
migrants, in Journal of Intercultural Studies (1993). A precursor is: The
pragmatics of minority politics in Belgium, in Language in Society 20:
503-531 (all written by Blommaert & verschueren). The same line of
analysis is used in The role of language in European nationalist
ideologies, in Pragmatics 2/3: 355-375 (1992) [reprinted in Christina
Schaeffner & Anita Wenden, eds. 1995, Language and Peace. Dartmouth Publ.].

Enjoy it,
Jan Blommaert

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