LINGUIST List 29.2992

Mon Jul 23 2018

Calls: Applied Ling, Disc Analysis, Lang Acquisition, Ling Theories, Psycholing/Germany

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Date: 23-Jul-2018
From: Thomas Tinnefeld <>
Subject: 5th Saarbrücken Conference on Foreign Language Teaching
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Full Title: 5th Saarbrücken Conference on Foreign Language Teaching
Short Title: 5th SCFT

Date: 29-Oct-2019 - 31-Oct-2019
Location: Saarbrücken, Germany
Contact Person: Thomas Tinnefeld
Meeting Email:
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Applied Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; Language Acquisition; Linguistic Theories; Psycholinguistics

Call Deadline: 31-Aug-2019

Meeting Description:

Fifth Saarbrücken Conference on Foreign Language Teaching

The Magic of Language - Productivity in Linguistics and Language Teaching

The theme of the Fifth Saarbrücken Conference on Foreign Language Teaching is
productivity in linguistics and language teaching, the productive use of
language often being marked by an undeniable magic. This magic does not only
consist in the fact that people are capable of understanding each other if
they master the same code. It is also true when people talk about things they
have never talked about and when new ideas occur to them or when they use
notions and words that have not existed before, i.e. when they employ language
productively and construct their own world. The relationship between the
productivity and the magic of language works on various levels:

Pragmatics – whenever people produce sentences and utterances, they are
productive. The linguistic means that they have at their disposal allow them
to create language structures and language patterns, which aim at
communicating information, arousing emotions and, eventually, eliciting
reactions in their interlocutors.

Languages for specific purposes – any newly discovered phenomenon of the
extralinguistic world needs to be named and classified. Neologisms, which
provide a linguistic form for the corresponding notions, function at the word
level and are often of a specific nature. These languages for specific
purposes, then, are productive sublanguages par excellence.

Language methodology – whenever teachers instruct their pupils and students to
communicate orally or in writing, they boost the latter's productivity.
Teachers enable students to overcome boundaries in a language other than their
mother tongue and to enter a terra incognita, which may give them a feeling
for their own intellectual potential and a certain awareness of their chances
to get in contact with people they would not be able to communicate with if
they did not master the target language.

The magic of language also refers to the interpersonal and intercultural
mechanisms which are characteristic of any communication situation. In
critical situations, for example, boundaries, which generally exist between
individuals and between people of different cultural imprints and
socialisations, can be overcome. The processes involved will then lead to a
redefinition of such relationships and, thus, be productive.

Differences in the processes in the brains of bilingual and multilingual
people vs. those in the brains of monolingual people – the brains of bilingual
and multilingual people develop into structures that are different from the
ones of monolingual people. Consequently, productivity has a direct influence
on the mental and intellectual development of people and their personalities.

Emotional factors - we all may find that we are “different” in situations when
speaking a foreign language as compared to those situations when using our
mother tongue. Acting multilingually, we seem to have different personalities
– one for each language we speak. When giving it a thought, we notice that it
is much easier to make emotional utterances in a foreign language than in our
mother tongue – as in the foreign language, our emotions are redefined and we
feel more free in terms of behaviour and use of language.

Language in general and the teaching or learning of foreign languages in
particular provide us with new insights. This is true for various areas of
linguistics, for our daily and professional lives and, last but not least, for
language methodology. The magic of language, which is closely intertwined with
the productivity of language, may seem less accessible, less ''handy'', than
other potential themes, but it allows creativity to happen and may generate
multiple stimuli for the professional practice of teachers and researchers.

Call for Papers:

Participants who wish to give an academic talk are requested to submit their
abstract by 31 August 2019. Abstracts should not exceed a length of 400 words
and should be sent by email to as a
Microsoft Word (.doc / .docx) or Open Office (.odt) document.

Please find more details on the conference and the different sections below:

Conference in total:


Abstracts will be reviewed soon after submission and participants will be
notified in due time. Abstracts of accepted talks will be published on the
conference website.

Page Updated: 23-Jul-2018