23.19, Calls: Socioling, Anthropological Ling/Germany

Tue Jan 3 19:29:33 UTC 2012

LINGUIST List: Vol-23-19. Tue Jan 03 2012. ISSN: 1069 - 4875.

Subject: 23.19, Calls: Socioling, Anthropological Ling/Germany

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Date: 28-Dec-2011
From: Tope Omoniyi [T.Omoniyi at roehampton.ac.uk]
Subject: God in the City: Cultural Identities and Language Practices in Urban Religious Settings

-------------------------Message 1 ---------------------------------- 
Date: Tue, 03 Jan 2012 14:28:59
From: Tope Omoniyi [T.Omoniyi at roehampton.ac.uk]
Subject: God in the City: Cultural Identities and Language Practices in Urban Religious Settings

E-mail this message to a friend:
Full Title: God in the City: Cultural Identities and Language Practices in Urban Religious Settings 
Short Title: God in the City 

Date: 22-Aug-2012 - 24-Aug-2012
Location: Berlin, Germany 
Contact Person: Christian M√ľnch
Meeting Email: christian.muench at romanistik.rwth-aachen.de
Web Site: http://neon.niederlandistik.fu-berlin.de/ss19/sessions/116 

Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics; Sociolinguistics 

Call Deadline: 31-Jan-2012 

Meeting Description:

Chriost (2007) theorises the city as a legitimate framework and site for investigating language and globalisation processes. Within that framework, we recognise the postmodern city as being characterised by religious diversity due to manifold processes including migration, processes of cultural integration and identity formation. Much of the religious diversity in urban settings goes hand in hand with multicultural identities and multilingual practices that reflect the countries of origin of immigrant groups arriving at different times.

While urban religious settings and the study of cultural and linguistic identities form part of the research agenda of many disciplines, including sociology, anthropology or ethnography (Livezey 2000; Carnes/Karpathakis 2001; Alba/Raboteau/DeWind 2009), sociolinguistics still has a long way to go in mapping the complex interface between religion, identity and language or linguistic practices. The disciplinary departure from language scholarship as one dedicated to discrete language units to one that engages with 'what' we do with language as social practice as well as 'how', affords opportunities for exploring the interface vis-a-vis the city. Fishman's (2006) decalogue of theoretical principles is well worth exploring and deploying in this context.

The complimentary processes of sacrilization and secularization that accompany globalisation in multifaith cities in particular and societies in general further put the spotlight on the language, religion and culture interface. This is not only because the spread of major religions throughout the world naturally accounts for the presence of the associated languages of those religions in the multilingual and multicultural networks and repertoires of cities, but also because the social and political dynamics reflect the trajectories of the multitude of religious groups and their respective language and literacy practices. Depending on the origins and history of component communities, the city features varying and changing linguistic landscapes to reflect its diverse languages and cultural practices.

Religious groups are becoming increasingly dynamic in their approach to integrating members of different cultural and social origins as Omoniyi (2011) illustrates with holy hip-hop and social change. Particularly in urban settings, religious groups on virtually all sides of the spectrum strive towards the integration of culturally and linguistically diverse congregations. With religion being the dominant category, language nevertheless often plays a pivotal role in both, giving room to the expression of cultural practices through the use of different languages, as well as bringing together the community through the use of one language accepted by all members, however linguistically diverse the community may be. The sociology of language and religion as a subdiscipline has made a modest start in this regard (see for instance Salami 2006, Omoniyi 2006 and 2011) but these efforts need now to be extended to cover the complex issues raised by the interface in the city. 

Call for Papers:

The panel organizers wish to invite submissions from a variety of theoretical and methodological perspectives on language, religion and cultural identity, focussing on elements such as literacy practices, use of written language, identity formation, cultural practices, including historical approaches as well as current fieldwork in progress. We also encourage submissions from a multitude of cultural and linguistic backgrounds that clearly describe their underlying theoretical concepts and methodological approaches. In organizing this panel, neither the type of religion nor the specific focus on language or culture is emphasized, but the analysis of the nexus between religion, language and identity.

Please go to the conference website to register and submit your 500 word abstract:


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