Workshop: Ideological Deminsions of Space and Spatial Dimensions of Ideology

Christopher Hart christopher.hart at
Fri Nov 2 15:18:53 UTC 2012

Dear colleagues,


I am organising a workshop at Northumbria next week together with
various colleagues from outside the department/university.  The workshop
on Ideological Dimensions of Space and Spatial Dimensions of Ideology
will take place Thursday 8th November, 11.00-14.00 in Lipman 027.  The
idea is to have an informal meeting with a few short presentations and a
more general discussion in the hope that something further can come out
of this.  Anyone who is interested, from any discipline and working with
any genre/modality, is welcome. Please get in touch.  More information


Participants so far ..

*         David Baines (Newcastle University)

*         Deborah Chambers (Newcastle University)

*         Sarah Dobell (Northumbria University)

*         Laura Filardo-Llamas (University  of Valladolid)

*         Christopher Hart (Northumbria University)

*         Bertie Kaal (VU University Amsterdam)

*         Darren Kelsey (Newcastle University)

*         Monika Kopytowska (University of Lodz)

*         Simon McKerrell (Newcastle University)

*         John Richardson (Loughborough University)


Description and objectives

Space is a fundamental domain of cognition which plays an important part
in structuring conceptual representations in other non-spatial domains
(Levinson 2003).  Starting from this "spatialisation of form" hypothesis
(Lakoff 1987) it has been argued that discourse involves the
construction of a mental space which functions as a basic cohesive
element in the representation of social realities (Searle 2010) as
entities, events and processes within the social world are organized
relative to an ego-centric "deictic centre" (Chilton 2004, 2005).  The
geometric conceptualisations which underpin ideological and value-based
positions in discourse can be mapped out "across space as coordinate
correspondences on three fundamental dimensions" (Chilton 2005: 81):
space, time and modality, or axiology (cf. Cap 2010).  This model of
discourse analysis has been applied in various discursive contexts,
including war-legitimising discourse (Cap 2006), political party
representations (Kaal, in press), metaphorical depictions of threat in
immigration discourse (Hart 2010), and the (de)construction of conflict
and national memory (Filardo-Llamas 2010).


At the same time, the domain of space displays significant diversity in
how it is structured in language and discourse (Levinson 2003).  The
topology of space offers variables across particular parameters of
distance, direction, orientation and motion (Langacker 2008) and
Discourses exploit this "grammar" of space in different ways and to
different ideological effects (Hart, forth.).


In this workshop we would like to address the basic
(cognitive-linguistic) descriptive tools and methodological procedures
for studying ideological variation in discursive constructions of space
and spatially-construed constructions of social realities in discourse.
We see this approach as offering fresh philosophical and analytical
ground for Critical Discourse Analysis.


The workshop will be an informal meeting on Thursday 8th November
11.00-14.00 in Lipman 027.  It will involve several short (12 minute)
presentations and plenty of discussion.  If you would like to
participate and/or give a presentation please email Chris Hart
(christopher.hart at
<mailto:christopher.hart at> ).  Cross-disciplinary
perspectives welcome!




*         Cap, P. 2006. Legitimisation in Political Discourse: A
Cross-Disciplinary Perspective on the Modern US War Rhetoric. Newcastle:
Cambridge Scholars Press.

*         Cap, P. 2010. "Axiological aspects of proximization." Journal
of Pragmatics 42: 392-407.

*         Chilton, P. 2004. Analysing Political Discourse: Theory and
Practice. London: Routledge.

*         Chilton, P. 2005. "Discourse Space Theory: Geometry, brain and
shifting viewpoints."  Annual Review of Cognitive Linguistics 3: 78-116.

*         Filardo-Llamas, L. 2010. "Discourse worlds in Northern
Ireland: The legitimisation of the 1998

*         agreement." In K. Hayward and C. O'Donnell (eds.) Political
Discourse and Conflict Resolution. Debating Peace in Northern Ireland.
London: Routledge: 62-76.

*         Hart, C. 2010. Critical Discourse Analysis and Cognitive
Science: New Perspectives on Immigration Discourse. Basingstoke:
Palgrave Macmillan.

*         Hart, C. forth.  "Ideological dimensions of the grammar of
space: Positioning strategies in text and image."

*         Kaal, B. 2012 (in press) "Worldviews: Spatial ground for
political reasoning in Dutch election manifestos", CADAAD Journal 6 (1).

*         Levinson, S.C. 2003. Spatial Language and Cognition:
Explorations in cognitive diversity. Cambridge: CUP.

*         Searle, J.R. 2010. Making the Social World: The structure of
human civilization. Oxford: OUP.





Dr Christopher Hart


Senior Lecturer in Cognitive Linguistics

School of Arts and Social Sciences

Room 404b

Lipman Building

Northumbria University



Tel:    0191 227 4816


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