Call for papers: Grammar and genre: interfaces and influences - October 24-26, Turku, Finland

Pekka Posio pekka.posio at
Tue Mar 6 15:14:41 UTC 2012

Grammar and genre:  interfaces and influences
October 24th – 26th, 2012
Turku, Finland

The Linguistic Association of Finland (in collaboration with the Faculty 
of Humanities of Åbo Akademi University)

Variation is one of the key themes in modern grammatical studies, and 
its investigation highlights the role of contextual factors in the 
structure of language. These factors can be on many levels and of many 
different types. The mere genre to which a text belongs potentially 
dictates a variety of linguistic structures. (For studies about genre 
see e.g. Bakhtin 1986 to begin with, and more recently Martin & Rose 
2008, Biber & Conrad 2009, and Dorgeloh & Wanner 2010.)

This symposium aims to study the interfaces between grammar and genre: 
the purpose is to investigate how genre affects grammatical choices. How 
are genre distinctions reflected in grammar, be it for example literary 
vs. media genres, or distinctions such as argumentative, informative, 
persuasive, expressive, or narrative genres? Is a specific genre 
belonging to a particular domain, e.g. sport news vs. economy news, 
characterized by certain grammatical choices? Possible genre 
distinctions are various, and both empirical questions related to the 
theme and more theoretical implications and reflections thereof are welcome.

We would like to bring together linguists from different fields: 
linguists studying languages with a small number of speakers, linguists 
whose data come from languages with millions of speakers and a wide 
variety of institutionalized genres, theoretically oriented linguists to 
discuss the implications, as well as linguists with more empirical 

We warmly welcome papers related to these questions. Possible topics for 
talks include, but, as usual, are not restricted to, the following:
- How does the grammarian take into account the belonging of the data to 
a certain genre? If the available data is restricted to a particular 
genre, how does this affect the results? How does the field worker react 
to this?
- How does the linguist identify the genre in question?
- Why do some grammatical constructions appear only in a specific genre?
- Is grammar one and only for a given language? How do we account for 
Coseriu’s distinction sistema - norma social/individual - hablar 
concreto in empirical, data-driven linguistics?
- How can we use the outcomes of stylistics in modern grammatical 
studies (cf. Bally’s stylistics a century ago), that is not only in the 
literary sense but to explore variation in grammar? What is the 
relationship between genre and style?
- How does the speaker manipulate grammar to create a genre?
- The concept of genre and language learning
- Genre in different domains
- Genre and language evolution
- Genre and language contacts: Does genre play a role in code switching?

Invited plenary speakers:
Maarten Mous, Leiden University
Maria Vilkuna, Institute for the Languages of Finland
Tuija Virtanen-Ulfhielm, Åbo Akademi University
Anja Wanner, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Scientific committee:
Heidrun Dorgeloh
Kjersti Fløttum
Jyrki Kalliokoski
Ritva Laury
Jan Nuyts
María José Serrano
Susanna Shore
Anna Solin
Geoff Thompson

Organizing committee:
Meri Larjavaara
Sonja Dahlgren
Arja Hamari
Leena Maria Heikkola
Lotta Jalava
Santra Jantunen
Pekka Posio
Ilona Rauhala
Erika Sandman
Maija Sirola
Elina Tapio
Mikko Virtanen
Katja Västi
Milja Väänänen

Abstract submission:
Please send your abstract no later than April 30, 2012 (see for 
instructions). The length of abstracts should not exceed 500 words 
(excluding data and references). Abstracts will be evaluated by the 
members of the scientific committee and also by the organizing 
committee. Letters of acceptance will be sent by June 5, 2012.

The symposium can include workshops. Proposals for them should be 
submitted no later than April 2, 2012 (see for 
instructions). Notification of acceptance will be given by April 16. 
These one-day workshops will run in parallel sessions with the main 
conference program. Alternatively, the first day of the symposium may be 
dedicated to workshops. The symposium organizers will provide the 
lecture rooms and other facilities, but the workshop organizers will be 
responsible for the organization of their workshops (choosing the 
speakers etc.).

Key dates:
– Deadline for abstract submission: April 30, 2012
– Notification of acceptance: June 5, 2012
– Proposals for workshops: April 2, 2012
– Notification of acceptance of workshops: April 16, 2012

– Presentations by the invited speakers
– Presentations by other participants
– Posters
– Workshops

Bakhtin, M. 1986: Speech genres and other late essays. Translated by 
Vern W. McGee. Austin, Texas: University of Texas Press.
Biber, D. & S. Conrad 2009: Register, genre and style. Cambridge: 
Cambridge University Press.
Dorgeloh, H. & A. Wanner (eds) 2010: Syntactic variation and genre, 
Berlin/New York:  De Gruyter Mouton.
Martin, J. R. & D. Rose 2008: Genre relations. Mapping culture. London: 

For more information please visit the webpage of the symposium at

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