Workshop on Code-Switching in Professional Contexts

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Sat Aug 27 15:42:27 UTC 2005

Forwarded from Linguist-List,

Full Title: Code Choice / Code Switching in Professional Contexts

Date: 29-Oct-2005 - 31-Oct-2005
Location: Graz, Austria
Contact Person: Eva Lavric
Meeting Email: eva.lavric at
Web Site:

Call Deadline: 30-Sep-2005

Meeting Description:

Code choice / code switching in professional contexts

Verbal-Workshop at the Oesterreichische Linguistiktagung (Austrian
Conference of Linguists) in Graz, 29-31 October 2005

Code choice and code switching are often investigated in contexts of
migration and/or diglossia and are usually related to distinctions of
domains, like family, peer group, religion, profession, etc. This workshop
picks up just one of these domains and concentrates on contexts that are
usually related to buzzwords like foreign language use and foreign
language needs. We shall study the multiple ways in which, without
migration or diglossia, code choice and code switching belong to the
linguistic repertoire of many speakers in normal professional life. The
professional contexts we are thinking of could be:

- Language teaching in a narrow and in a broader sense: what is the role
played by the switching between L1 and L2 (and possible other L's) in the
foreign language classroom and around it? This includes situations like
CLIL and multilingual schools and/or schools in multilingual regions.

- Business contexts and especially international business: where do code
choice issues come in in export, and which role do they play in internal
communication within big international companies? What linguistic
strategies do companies adopt when confronted with markets in multilingual

- Special area: Tourism. In tourism, language is a constant preoccupation,
and it is likely that we will find code choice problems and code choice
strategies specific to each of the various tourism professions. In tourism
regions the foreign language needs are pervasive in nearly all branches of
service encounters.

- Special area: Translation/interpreting. This is a domain which overlaps
partly with the two preceding ones, but it also has some aspects of its
own. How do speakers manage the switching from one language to another in
discourse?  Who decides and on what grounds whether to hire a translator?
And how do situations work in which it is one of the participants who
takes over spontaneously the part of the interpreter?

- Finally, contributions dealing with code choice / code switching in
migration and diglossic contexts shall not be excluded from our field of
research, provided they study the phenomenon in professional situations.

We are going to investigate not only the phenomenology / factuality of
code choices and code switching, but also shed light onto the whys and
wherefores, onto possible patterns of explanation and motivation, e.g.
efficiency, politeness, identity claims, etc. All contributions should
have an empirical foundation.

We shall try to provide the usual 20 minutes' time for each presentation
(+ 10 minutes of discussion). The papers are going to be published.

To participate, e-mail your title and an abstract (500 words maximum)
until 30th September to:

eva.lavric at

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Eva Lavric
Institut fuer Romanistik
Universitaet Innsbruck
Innrain 52
A-6020 Innsbruck

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