Upcoming symposium on EU expansion and language policy

humphrey tonkin tonkin at hartford.edu
Sat May 21 15:54:29 UTC 2005


Vilnius, Lithuania

July 30 - August 1, 2005

Language Policy Aspects of the Expansion of the European Union

Goal.  Among the many questions raised by the expanded membership of the
European Union is the question of languages.  What arrangements should be
made for the use of languages in the various EU bodies themselves, and what
policies should be introduced, for example regarding foreign language
learning in the educational systems of the various countries?  The relative
lack of formal policies in this area is currently leading little by little
to informal arrangements which could threaten the languages and cultural
values of some of the smaller states and could compromise the principle of
equality among EU members.  The Vilnius symposium will explore the various
political alternatives and seek consensus on some basic recommendations on
EU language policy under the new conditions.

Sponsors.  The University of Vilnius, the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences,
the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Lithuanian Parliament, the Centre for
Research and Documentation on World Language Problems.

Invitees.  The Symposium will be an invitational gathering.  Representatives
of each of the new members of the European Union will be invited to attend,
along with specialists in language policy and related fields, diplomats, and
representatives of the European Union.

Programme.  The formal portion of the symposium will begin on Saturday, July
30, at 14:00 and will end on Monday. August 1, at 17:00.  The program will
consist of lectures by invited lecturers, the presentation of position
papers by invitees, and general debate and discussion.  Dinners will be
arranged on Saturday and Sunday evenings.

Languages.  Interpretation will be provided at least in English and
Esperanto and in other languages where possible.  Participants are
encouraged to provide written texts in advance where appropriate.

Accommodation.  Accommodation will be arranged in hotels or guest houses by
the sponsors.

Organization.  The Center for Research and Documentation (CRD) will be
responsible for the organization of the symposium.  CRD promotes research,
teaching and publication on international language issues and publishes the
scholarly journal Language Problems and Language Planning.

Proceedings.  The proceedings of the symposium will be published.

Origins.  The Nitobe Symposium is named after Nitobe Inazo (1862-1933),
Deputy Secretary-General of the League of Nations, who fought for language
equality and justice in that organization.  The first Nitobe Symposium was
held in Prague in 1996.  Subsequent symposia were held in Berlin (1999) and
Beijing (2004).

Further information: tonkin at hartford.edu

Humphrey Tonkin
President Emeritus & University Professor of the Humanities
Office:  Mortensen Library, University of Hartford
            West Hartford, CT 06117, USA
            Tel: +1 860-768-4448    Fax: +1 860-768-4411
Home:  279 Ridgewood Road,
            West Hartford, CT 06107, USA
            Tel: +1 860-561-2669    Fax: +1 860-561-5219

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