* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
LINGUIST List logo Eastern Michigan University Wayne State University *
* People & Organizations * Jobs * Calls & Conferences * Publications * Language Resources * Text & Computer Tools * Teaching & Learning * Mailing Lists * Search *
* *

LINGUIST List 23.3749

Fri Sep 07 2012

Calls: Anthropological Linguistics, Cognitive Science/Belgium

Editor for this issue: Alison Zaharee <alisonlinguistlist.org>

Date: 06-Sep-2012
From: Ferry Victor <vferryulb.ac.be>
Subject: Uses and Functions of Rhetoric
E-mail this message to a friend

Full Title: Uses and Functions of Rhetoric

Date: 16-May-2013 - 18-May-2013
Location: Bruxelles, Belgium
Contact Person: Ferry Victor
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site: http://rheto13.ulb.ac.be/

Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics; Cognitive Science

Call Deadline: 30-Nov-2012

Meeting Description:


To decide, to deliberate, to console, to put together, to divide, to reassure, to worry... all these uses seem natural and common to humanity, regardless of culture, period, or condition. To testify, to argue, to harangue, to judge, to celebrate, to confess... all these functions always appear to be linked with institutions or at least with specific social contexts. However, first and foremost, all these acts instantiate rhetoric practices. Are such acts natural and, thus constitutive of mankind? Or are they cultural and, hence, specific to some periods and places? Are these two viewpoints incompatible? We think not. That is why we propose to go back to the Aristotelian naturalist and humanist model of Rhetoric, which is still relevant today.

Second, these rhetorical acts are nowadays studied by different fields dealing with reason and human action. These disciplines attempt to go beyond the ancient oppositions between nature and culture, theory and practice, thought and action. In this perspective, we think that it is time for such disciplines, as for society as a whole, to overcome divisions that have influenced research over the past centuries.

It is for this reason that we decided to bring together representatives of three disciplines to address such interdisciplinary issues in the context of an international congress:

1) Researchers in rhetoric who are interested in anthropology of speech and human reason.

2) Cognitive scientists interested in the study of linguistic and psychological actions that are linked with the main rhetorical functions.

3) Specialists from all Human Sciences who study uses and functions of rhetoric from their own epistemological culture (e.g. Linguistic, Anthropology, Law, Psychology, Bioethics, etc.)


Our overall goal is first of all to understand rhetoric today, away from Schools and ideologies that have influenced thinking for centuries. For furthering our understanding of rhetoric is a way to better understanding practical reason as well as its epistemological background and its social relevance. From this perspective, it is crucial to place a wager on knowledge by trying to open up disciplines and to change habits so as to launch a common reflection on shared objects of interest. Our safeguard will be a commitment to permanent debate about epistemology of disciplines. Such a debate must become a lingua franca between researchers coming from various fields.

Call for Papers:

We invite proposals from researchers coming from the three broad domains defined above. Communications must deal with one of the mentioned rhetorical actions. It has to be considered as a human skill or as a function in social life. For every rhetorical action, contributions will deal with the links between nature, uses and functions (e.g., what is this practice useful for? A person? A group? A community? A society? How does it function? Does an institution culturally determine the action? Is it comparable with other cultural phenomena? etc.).

(Non exhaustive) list of possible rhetorical actions to study:

Deliberate, decide, judge, reform, institute, tell, testify, divide, reconcile, celebrate, commemorate, evaluate (risks), critique, confess, harangue, encourage, discourage, console.

Proposals (+/- 200 words), with a brief biography, should be submitted by November 30, 2012 to rhetorique2013ulb.ac.be. Notifications of acceptance will be sent out at the beginning of January 2013.

Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue

Page Updated: 07-Sep-2012

Supported in part by the National Science Foundation       About LINGUIST    |   Contact Us       ILIT Logo
While the LINGUIST List makes every effort to ensure the linguistic relevance of sites listed on its pages, it cannot vouch for their contents.