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LINGUIST List 16.2931

Mon Oct 10 2005

Confs: General Ling/Typology/Kobe, Japan

Editor for this issue: Kevin Burrows <kevinlinguistlist.org>

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        1.    John Charles Smith, Third Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar: 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages'

Message 1: Third Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar: 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages'
Date: 06-Oct-2005
From: John Charles Smith <johncharles.smithstcatz.ox.ac.uk>
Subject: Third Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar: 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages'

Third Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar: 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages'

Date: 02-Apr-2006 - 05-Apr-2006
Location: Kobe, Japan
Contact: John Charles Smith
Contact Email: < click here to access email >
Meeting URL: http://kobeinst.com/eindex.html

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics; Language Description; Typology

Meeting Description:

The Third Oxford–Kobe Linguistics Seminar, on 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages', will be held at the St. Catherine's College (University of Oxford) Kobe Institute, in Kobe, Japan, between 2 and 5 April 2006. The working language of the Seminar will be English. Although papers at the Seminar will be by invitation only, proposals for poster presentations are welcomed.





The Third Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar, on 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages', is being organized at the St. Catherine's College (University of Oxford) Kobe Institute, in Kobe, Japan, by Peter Austin (SOAS, University of London), Masayoshi Shibatani (Rice University & Kobe University), and John Charles Smith (University of Oxford), between 2 and 5 April 2006.

The First Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar, entitled 'Language Change and Historical Linguistics', was held in April 2002. Following the enormous success of this event, the Kobe Institute agreed to sponsor a Second Linguistics Seminar, in September 2004, devoted to the history and structure of the Japanese language, the proceedings of which are due to be published by the Tokyo publishing house of Kurosio. This Seminar was also highly successful, and has paved the way for a further meeting in the series. Our reason for choosing 'The Linguistics of Endangered Languages' as the title of the Third Seminar is because we feel that this topic is timely, and because we wish to elaborate on the point (often made, but less frequently demonstrated) that the loss of endangered languages means the loss of unique and unusual linguistic features that we would otherwise have no knowledge of, and that the extinction of languages inevitably results in a poorer linguistics and a poorer language and cultural heritage for the world as a whole. Once again, the aim of the Seminar is to bring together leading authorities in the field and invite them to summarize their position in 'state of the art' papers, and simultaneously to promote collaboration and scholarly exchange between academic colleagues from Japan and other countries in a relaxed and convivial environment. We invite everyone with an interest in linguistic typology and endangered languages to join us on this occasion. A special welcome is extended to younger scholars and to graduate students.


The St. Catherine's College (University of Oxford) Kobe Institute, in Kobe, Japan, is an independent non-profit-making organization. It was established in September 1991 by donations from Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture and more than 100 companies all over Japan. The Institute was established with the objectives of stimulating and facilitating intellectual exchange between Japan and other nations, and is maintained with financial support from corporate sources. 1997 saw the establishment, as part of this programme, of the Oxford-Kobe seminars, which aim to bring together researchers in a particular discipline from academia, industry, and other bodies to discuss the 'state of the art' in their area of expertise. The seminar programme is sustained in part with income from external sponsors.

The Seminar will be held in the Institute's buildings, a purpose-built independent academic complex at the foot of Rokko Mountain, with outstanding views over the city of Kobe and Osaka Bay. The Institute has a library, a computing room with e-mail facilities, a lecture theatre, seminar rooms, common rooms, dining rooms and bar facilities. There is also a television room with satellite television.

Information on the Kobe Institute, including access maps, photographs, and an account of its history, can be found at: http://www.kobeinst.com


The Seminar will begin in the late afternoon/early evening on Sunday, 2 April 2006, with Registration and a Welcome Reception. The three days from Monday, 3 April to Wednesday 5 April, inclusive, will be devoted to papers and discussion. It is suggested that participants should arrive during the morning or early afternoon of Sunday, 2 April, and leave on Thursday, 6 April. All papers will be invited plenary lectures and will last 50-55 minutes. The language of the Seminar will be English.


The following scholars have agreed to give papers at the Seminar:

Peter Austin, SOAS, University of London, UK
Peri Bhaskararao, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Japan
Claire Bowern, Rice University, USA
Shuanfan Huang, National Taiwan University, Taiwan
Ritsuko Kikusawa, National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan
Friederike Luepke, SOAS, University of London, UK
Martin Maiden, University of Oxford, UK
Elena Maslova, Stanford University, USA
Denny Moore, Museu Goeldi, Belem, Brazil
Osami Okuda, Sapporo Gakuin University, Japan
Keren Rice, University of Toronto, Canada
Malcolm Ross, Australian National University, Australia
Masayoshi Shibatani, Rice University, USA / Kobe University, Japan
Graham Thurgood, California State University, Chico, USA
Tasaku Tsunoda, University of Tokyo, Japan
Roberto Zavala, CIESAS-Sureste, Mexico

A detailed programme, including titles and abstracts of papers, will be available in the Autumn.


The working language of the Seminar will be English. All papers will be plenary, and will be followed by discussion. As before, we hope to publish a volume of proceedings.

Although the papers at the Seminar will be by invitation only, a period will be set aside for poster presentations. This session is intended primarily as an opportunity for younger scholars, including graduate students, to present their work. We welcome proposals for poster presentations, abstracts of which (not exceeding 250 words) should be emailed (preferably as BOTH .pdf AND .rtf attachments; .doc format should be avoided) to ALL THREE organizers at the following addresses by 15 January 2006:

Peter Austin: pa2soas.ac.uk
Masayoshi Sibatani: mattrice.edu
John Charles Smith: johncharles.smithstcatz.ox.ac.uk

Any queries about the organization and content of the Seminar should also be emailed to the same addresses.


There will be a registration fee of JPY10,000 (approx. GBP50, EUR75, or USD90) for participants other than organizers and invited speakers. Coffee and tea, buffet lunches, and drinks before dinner will be provided at the Institute, and are included in the registration fee. Dinner after the Welcome Reception and a Conference Dinner (both buffet style) are available to general participants, students, and poster presenters at JPY3,000 (approx. GBP15, EUR22, or USD27) per meal, subject to advance reservation. Drinks will be provided in the SCR Bar after each dinner, and are included in this charge. Meals for vegetarians will be prepared on request.

To register for the Seminar, and/or to obtain more information about the Seminar and the Kobe Institute, please contact the Chief Bursar of the Kobe Institute, Dr Kaizaburo Saito, as follows:

email: kaizaskobeinst.com

postal address: St. Catherine's College (University of Oxford) Kobe Institute, 53-1 Maruyama, Gomo-Aza, Nada-ku, Kobe 657-0801 Japan

telephone: +81-78-881-2277 fax: +81-78-881-2552

A downloadable registration form will be available shortly.

The deadline for registration will be 3 March 2006.

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