Language and Law

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Mon Mar 13 21:26:45 UTC 2006

Forwarded from Linguist-List,

The Language & Law Conference
Short Title: LANGLAW

Date: 17-May-2006 - 19-May-2006
Location: Duesseldorf, Germany
Contact: Dieter Stein
Contact Email:
Meeting URL:

Meeting Description:

The Language and Law Conference will be held from May 17 to 19, 2006 in
Duesseldorf, Germany. It is an interdisciplinary joint-venture of the
University of Duesseldorf and the University of California, Los Angeles.

Both legal practice and lawmaking are possible only through language.
Beyond the precise wording of laws, however, other linguistic aspects are
also of pivotal importance for judicial proceedings. For example, the
careful analysis of regional or sociolinguistic peculiarities is often
employed in profiling and assessments of witness testimonies and can
actively support legal practitioners in reaching concise and accurate

Conversely, language may also turn out to be a barrier, especially when it
is necessary to overcome international and intercultural borders. The
necessity to harmonize the European Union's legislation and strong trends
of economic globalisation lead to a number of different problems. What
should have priority in cases of language ambiguity? A perhaps incorrect
translation into a national language or the English original version? In
what way are international laws adapted to legal institutions of a
particular nation?

These questions underline that there is a close connection between
linguistics and jurisprudence, between language and law.

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