LINGUIST List 17.123|
Mon Jan 16 2006
FYI: Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN)
Editor for this issue: Svetlana Aksenova
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Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN)
Message 1: Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN)
From: Joachim Scharloth <scharlothaccess.unizh.ch>
Subject: Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN)
Introducing the Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN)and Call for
At present the social history of the European languages is typically seen
within national borders despite the common extra-linguistic context which
influenced and shaped these languages. The scholarly study of these
phenomena is at the heart of the linguistic subdiscipline called
'Historical Sociolinguistics' or 'Socio-historical Linguistics'. Applying
traditional and modern sociolinguistic methods to language history,
Historical Sociolinguistics attempts to explain the interplay between
societal structures, language use and language change from a clear
historical perspective. Furthermore, it allows us to explore new data and
to tackle aspects of language history that have been left unattended so far.
Somewhat surprisingly, there is no central forum on historical
sociolinguistics to date for the exchange of relevant information across
national and linguistic borders. There have been no international
conferences, summer schools or colloquia on the topic. Instead, research
was disseminated through more specialist narrowly focused conferences.
Thus, there is a great need for the creation of a permanent platform
between the involved researchers, through specific conferences,
publications and a scientific organization. In addressing these issues,
HiSoN, the ''Historical Sociolinguistics Network'' was established in
Bristol in 2005 and is keen to expand its membership.
Scopes of HiSoN
(1) Creating a permanent (web-based) reference point where information on
historical sociolinguistic research in Europe is centralised and which can
figure as a 'front office' for researchers in search of international
contacts in this domain.
(2) Creating a series of true and stable European research networks,
through (for example) co-ordinated project applications for topical
(3) Defining an agenda for research on neglected topics in historical
(4) Creating specific publishing opportunities for the comparative research
springing from the collaboration described above.
Members of HiSoN
HiSoN was founded at the conference ''Language History from below'' that
took place in 2005 at the University of Bristol. It is an informal network
of people who are interested in any aspect of Historical Sociolinguistics
and it consists of about 90 scholars from Europe, America, Australia and
Africa. There is no membership fee.
Our HiSoN website serves a platform for the circulation of information
among the participating scholars, and you can find it here:
How to participate
If you are interested in our activities or would like to join our mailing
list, please get in touch with stephan.elspassphil.uni-augsburg.de or
contact any of the initiators.
HiSoN workshop on 'Innovative approaches to the history of language
planning and language policy in Europe' at Sociolinguistics Symposium 16.
Limerick, Ireland (6-8 July, 2006).
Initiators of HiSoN
Stephan Elspass (Augsburg, Germany) - stephan.elspassphil.uni-augsburg.de
Nils Langer (Bristol, UK) - nils.langerbristol.ac.uk
Joachim Scharloth (Zuerich, Switzerland) - scharlothaccess.unizh.ch
Wim Vandenbussche (Brussels, Belgium) - wvdbusscvub.ac.be
Historical Sociolinguistics Network
c/o: Prof. Stephan Elspass
Lehrstuhl fuer Deutsche Sprachwissenschaft
Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics
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