Communication and Cognition 2011

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The main theme of the conference is: MANIPULATION, PERSUASION AND DECEPTION IN LANGUAGE The overall aim of this conference is to explore the parameters that affect the way we process communicated information; as a case in point, this 2010 edition will focus on the issue of persuasive, manipulative, biased and fallacious verbal communication. In this respect, we seek contributions which specifically focus on those (formal, informal, cognitive, linguistic and contextual) aspects of communication that orient the interpretation of language and fulfil argumentative and persuasive ends. Recent developments in cognitive science call for new research questions in the field of deceptive persuasion and manipulation through verbal communication, in particular in what regards the cognitive grounds of misguided and credulous interpretation – and more generally of gullibility. Emotions, trust, confidence and other attitudes have long been considered as keys for the effectiveness of persuasive language; the connotative load of certain keywords and more generally the role of the lexicon, as well as types of syntactic structures and other linguistic devices such as presuppositions have also been suspected to bear on the persuasive force of deceptive communication. However, little is known yet as to why and how these processes, including fallacious argumentation as a whole, jeopardize evaluation. Recent research in this growing field tends to confirm the hypothesis that communicative phenomena linked to deception and persuasion exploit cognitive biases and heuristics otherwise useful for the general economy of human communication. A long established concern for these cognitive biases and heuristics in information processing (see Wason 1966, 1968, Kahneman & Tversky 1974), which can in turn yield cognitive illusions and errors in information processing (see Pohl 2004), together with the input of cognitive anthropology (e.g. Mercier & Sperber, forth. Sperber et al. forth.) and developmental psychology (Mascaro & Sperber 2009, Clément 2010, Harris et al. forth.) opens a new promising trend of research on the persuasiveness of deceptive communication. It is one of the purposes of this conference to stimulate interdisciplinary inquiry on these themes. Accordingly, contributions promoting an integration of different – yet complementary – trends into interdisciplinary models of information processing are encouraged. The organisers will particularly welcome papers located at the interface of the disciplines concerned, whether grounded on empirical evidence or presenting a theoretical model. The targeted fields of research include, but are not limited to: linguistics in a broad sense, including pragmatics and discourse analysis; philosophy (in particular philosophy of mind, philosophy of language, argumentation theory, rhetoric); psychology (in particular cognitive psychology and neuroscience); communication sciences in a broader sense, including media studies; social sciences, in particular social psychology and anthropology.

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Meeting Location:
Neuchatel, Switzerland

Contact Information:
Rachel Marston

Meeting Dates:
The Communication and Cognition 2011 will be held from 26-Jan-2011 to 28-Jan-2011.

Abstract Submission Information:
Abstracts can be submitted from 10-Jul-2010 until 21-Oct-2010.

Communication and Cognition 2010,

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