LINGUIST List 32.2387

Thu Jul 15 2021

Calls: Socioling/Belgium

Editor for this issue: Lauren Perkins <>

Date: 15-Jul-2021
From: Mieke Vandenbroucke <>
Subject: Securitisation and Surveillance in Sociolinguistics
E-mail this message to a friend

Full Title: Securitisation and Surveillance in Sociolinguistics

Date: 13-Jul-2022 - 16-Jul-2022
Location: University of Ghent, Belgium
Contact Person: Mieke Vandenbroucke
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

Call Deadline: 15-Sep-2021

Meeting Description:

Invited Panel at Sociolinguistics Symposium 24 (13-16 July 2022) on ''Securitisation and Surveillance in Sociolinguistics''

Mieke Vandenbroucke (University of Antwerp), Daniel N. Silva (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina), Ben Rampton (King’s College London)

Driven by claims and suspicions that particular groups or phenomena present an existential threat that calls for special measures, securitization and surveillance are hard to ignore in contemporary life. Socio- and applied linguists are now engaging with these processes in a number of sites where the notion of an ‘enemy’ and/or acute physical insecurity feature prominently. This includes not only conflict zones and post-conflict education but also migration and asylum, social and mass media (see Charalambous 2017 for a review). The question arises: are these only niche interests? Or do the links between securitization, security surveillance, language ideology and communicative practice need to be drawn more fully into mainstream sociolinguistics, showing up in, for example, undergraduate textbooks, with (in)securitization as prominent as standardization in accounts of sociolinguistic differentiation?

Over the years, the broad field of sociolinguistics has demonstrated that language difference often maps into social inequality. With growing global securitization and surveillance, we need to consider the manner and extent to which linguistic difference and hierarchisation undergird the practices that categorise social groups as threats. Where and how is language used to justify violent measures to tackle people framed as “enemies”? And where and how do these measures stifle communicative practices associated with subjects and groups seen as sources of insecurity or violence?

Bringing together empirical studies of how communicative practice and language ideology connect with (in)securitization and surveillance across a range of contemporary (or historical) sites, this panel seeks to:
- chart some of the changing intersections of language, securitization and security surveillance (including Covid-19)
- examine language regimes and rationalities underpinning frameworks of securitization, including public security, citizen security, militarized security, de-securisation and digital securitization
- identify theoretical and methodological commonalities
- reflect on the implications for the political positioning of sociolinguist(ic)s
- assess the significance of all this for sociolinguistics more generally.

Call for Papers:

We are now inviting contributions to this panel, involving a series of 20 minute presentations + 10 minutes of Q&A (potentially in a hybrid digital and on-site format). If you would like to participate, no later than Wednesday 15 September, 2021, please send us an abstract of no more than 500 words, indicating:
- the title of your paper
- the project(s) it draws on
- its central focus and location
- key theoretical reference points
- methods of data collection and analysis
- (preliminary) findings and potential significance
- your name, contact details, position and institution

Please send your abstract to by September 15, 2021.

Page Updated: 15-Jul-2021