LINGUIST List 18.1443

Sun May 13 2007

Confs: Forensic Linguistics,Sociolinguistics/Netherlands

Editor for this issue: Jeremy Taylor <>

Directory         1.    Carolien van den Hazelkamp, Language Analysis in the Determination of National Origin of Refugees

Message 1: Language Analysis in the Determination of National Origin of Refugees
Date: 11-May-2007
From: Carolien van den Hazelkamp <>
Subject: Language Analysis in the Determination of National Origin of Refugees

Language Analysis in the Determination of National Origin of Refugees

Date: 21-Jun-2007 - 21-Jun-2007 Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands Contact: Carolien van den Hazelkamp Contact Email:

Linguistic Field(s): Forensic Linguistics; Sociolinguistics

Meeting Description:

In June 2007 the /Joint Summer Meeting 2007 of the Society of Pidgin and Creole Linguistics and the Associação de Crioulos de Base Lexical Portugesa e Espanhola will take place at the University of Amsterdam. On June 21 the Organizing Committee in cooperation with the Taalstudio is organizing a post conference workshop on Language Analysis in the determination of national origin of refugees.

Language analysis is used in several countries as an instrument to investigate the country of origin of refugees. In a language analysis the country (or region) of origin is established on the basis of (dialectal) characteristics of the asylum seeker's speech. At the 2003 Summer Conference of the Society for Pidgin and Creole Languages, a special session was organized about this use of language analysis in assessing asylum applications by speakers of pidgin and creole languages. This session provided a basis for the development of professional standards: /Guidelines for the Use of Language Analysis in Relation to Questions of National Origin in Refugee Cases/ (Language and National Origin Group, June 2004). The guidelines provide a useful framework for this new field, in which a lot of research still remains to be done.

The workshop contains presentations on a variety of topics related to this use of language analysis, and next to that there will be room for discussion and expertise-sharing.

9:00-9:30 Coffee and Opening

9:30-10:00 T. McNamara (University of Melbourne) Language analysis: A question of validity

10:00-10:30 Y. E-rramdani (University of Tilburg) Language analysis test and the determination of origin:Commenting validity

10:30-11:00 V.A. de Rooij (University of Amsterdam) (Im)Possibilities of language analysis as a means of establishing the nationality of asylum seekers

11:00-11:30 Coffee break

11:30-12:00 T. Cambier-Langeveld & A. Samson (Office for Country Information and Language Analysis GCKAO, Immigration and Naturalization Service (the Netherlands)) Language analysis: how to include both linguistic expertise and native competence, and why

12:00-12:30 I. Sawicka (Institute of the Slavic Philology) Recognizing language by phonetic information

12:30-12:50 Discussion

12:50-13:50 Lunch

13:50-14:20 E.M. Bergman (Georgetown University) Spoken Arabic and the Language Analyst

14:20-14:50 R. Thelwall (University of Calgary) The Argument from Silence? Diglossia and the identification of Sudan Arabic dialects

14:50-15:20 Shishir Bhattacharja (University of Montreal) Outlines of Forensic linguistic analysis for determining national origin

15:20-15:40 Coffee break

15:40-16:10 J. Ndayiragije (University of Toronto) Language Analysis and Microvariation: A Case Study in Bantu Relatives

16:10-16:40 M.A. Bah (University of Charleston) The problems of language determination and citizenship among ethnic groups spread across national political boundaries: the case of Pular and Fulbe in the Mano river tri- states of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea

16:40-17:00 Discussion

17:00 Drinks