LINGUIST List 31.2850

Mon Sep 21 2020

Calls: Applied Ling/Switzerland

Editor for this issue: Lauren Perkins <>

Date: 18-Sep-2020
From: Inês Signorini <>
Subject: Language practices of cyberhate
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Full Title: Language practices of cyberhate

Date: 27-Jun-2021 - 02-Jul-2021
Location: Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), Switzerland
Contact Person: Inês Signorini
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >

Linguistic Field(s): Applied Linguistics

Call Deadline: 22-Oct-2020

Meeting Description:

Since the rise of 'social media’ in the late 2010s, communities based on affects and affinities have rapidly spread and reached an audience never imagined before. A well known phenomenon associated with these communities is the circulation of false information or fake news. Due to these misinformation cascades (Easley & Kleinberg, 2010), we have seen how individuals abandon their own point of view and convictions to follow a community point of view, even although it sounds completely untrue or nonsensical. The usage of a hashtag points to this cascade behavior as it promotes a sense of belonging, of being a part of a community. This identity between individual and community may be faced as a shared practice of inclusion, but, while fake news is usually associated with the rise of populism and extremism, we have noticed how gender, religion, political, ethnic, and racial diversity has been frequently avoided, silenced, and excluded. In addition to exclusion, new forms of cyberbullying, more specifically new forms of verbal and semiotic violence, or cyberhate, emerge. As a matter of fact, the Internet has become a privileged tool to disseminate hatred, based on racism, xenophobia, bigotry, and all sorts of bias and prejudice.

In order to examine the language practices involved in cyberhate online, this panel invites scholars from all fields in pragmatics to approach and discuss contemporary language practices that are aimed at producing online hate speech and incitement in different forms of cyberhate, generally defined as ''any digital act of violence, hostility, and intimidation, directed towards people because of their identity or perceived difference'' (Khosravinik & Esposito, 2018).

As scholars interested on the topic of discourse analysis (Blommaert, 2005) and ethics of discourse (Graham, 2018) on social media communication, we propose some fundamental questions that could inspire and inform the discussion agenda: How do people get engaged linguistically and semiotically in processes of othering? How do people make investment in resources to support their online hate? How language works in this context of cyberhate? Under what circumstances the discursive practice of cyberhate is not only produced, but also consumed and diffused?

Call for Papers:

Paper proposals should be pre-submitted by email to the panel organizers by October 22 (; Papers will also need to be submitted via the main conference website (instructions at by October 25.

Blommaert, J. (2005). Discourse: a critical introduction. Cambridge University Press.
Easley, D. & Klleinberg, J. (2010). Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Reasoning about a Highly Connected World. Cambridge University Press.
Graham, P. (2018). Ethics in critical discourse analysis. Critical Discourse Studies, 15 (2), 186-203.
Khosravinik, M. & Esposito, E. (2018). Online hate, digital discourse and critique: Exploring digitally-mediated discursive practices of gender-based hostility. Lodz Papers in Pragmatics. 14. 45-68.

Page Updated: 21-Sep-2020