CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS: ‘Mobilities and Place’ Symposium, Liverpool, 9th May 2015


‘Mobilities and Place’ Symposium: 9th May 2015

The ninth annual Liverpool Travel Seminar, at Liverpool John Moores University, in collaboration with University of Liverpool and Liverpool Hope University.

The Liverpool Travel Seminar is a collaborative and interdisciplinary research forum launched jointly by Liverpool Hope University, the University of Liverpool, and Liverpool John Moores University in 2007. It provides a constructive environment in which colleagues from Liverpool’s universities with interests in travel and travel writing discuss the latest developments in their fields whilst reflecting on possible future directions. The Seminar provides a cross- and inter-disciplinary research infrastructure, permitting cross-institutional dialogue and research collaboration in Liverpool itself. At the same time, it aims to expand national and international networks of scholars working on travel and associated fields.

The symposium will take place on Saturday 9th May, 2015, from 9.30am until 6pm with wine reception and dinner afterwards. Keynote speakers are Professor Simon Bainbridge (University of Lancaster), Dr. Debbie Lisle (Queen’s University, Belfast) and Dr. Catherine Armstrong (University of Loughborough).

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers which address the general themes of mobility and space. We welcome papers from diverse disciplinary perspectives, exploring a variety of theoretical frameworks, cultural contexts and historical periods.

For further details, please contact the Seminar organisers: Professor Charles Forsdick (University of Liverpool;; Dr. Zoe Kinsley (Liverpool Hope University; or Dr. Kate Walchester (Liverpool John Moores University;

Please send abstracts of 300 words for the May 2015 event to Kate Walchester at Liverpool John Moores University by January 31st 2015.

CFP — Atlantic Communities: Translation, Mobility, Hospitality. Vigo. September 2015

First Call for Papers
Atlantic Communities: Translation, Mobility, Hospitality
University of Vigo (Spain)

17th-18th September 2015

Co-organized by: University of Vigo / University of Porto / Queen’s University Belfast 

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:
Michael Cronin (Dublin City University)
Charles Forsdick (University of Liverpool)

The Atlantic Ocean has historically played a major role in the relationship between the “Old World” and the “New World”, both perceived as a geographical and cultural divide between continents but also functioning as a space of transit, mobility and hospitality. Accordingly, the history and culture of the diverse countries and continents that border the Atlantic tends to be studied either in terms of regional influence within the framework of a geopolitics, or as a series of exchanges and encounters between the different people and territories on or near the Atlantic shores.

This conference seeks to bring together scholars from across the social sciences and the humanities in order both to extend the focus of these approaches and to suggest new ways of thinking about what binds and what separates the communities and individuals that inhabit the complex social and cultural spaces on both sides of the Atlantic.

We invite proposals for twenty-minute papers that address these broad concerns. A suggested – though not prescriptive – list of questions that potential contributors may wish to interrogate and/or illustrate includes:

 The Atlantic as an itinerary rather than a bounded site.

 The movement of peoples and ideas.

 Enforced migration and its consequences.

 Trans/Atlantic journeys and translational processes.

 Cultural exchange and encounter: contact, transfer and transformation.

 Representations in transit: the Atlantic in writing, images and sounds.

 “The rumble of tongues”: linguistic exchanges around/across the Atlantic.

 The tracing of an Atlantic identity: Atlantic communities and national/political organization.

300-word abstracts to be sent to the organizers at: by 31 January 2015. These will be peer reviewed and acceptance will be notified by 28 February 2015.

Further details may be obtained from the organizers, Teresa Caneda, Rui Carvalho Homem and David Johnston, by emailing

Community Languages: policy, pedagogy, public understanding

Community Languages: policy, pedagogy, public understanding

Organised by the Arts and Humanities Research Council ‘Translating Cultures’ theme in collaboration with the British Academy.

Monday 24 November 2014
at the British Academy

With immigration high on the political agenda ahead of the 2015 General Election, the debate on multiculturalism and multilingualism is enjoying increased attention from policy-makers, the media and the public. Community languages and how we perceive them form an integral part of these discussions. The 2011 census in England and Wales has provided detailed information regarding linguistic mapping, and reveals the growing place of superdiversity in a number of urban contexts. This situation is central to the rationale of the AHRC ‘translating cultures’ theme, one of the aims of which is to engage with key concepts such as multiculturalism, multilingualism, tolerance, intolerance and identity.

With a huge array of communities in the UK, speaking over 300 languages from all over the world, are we making the most of a valuable asset? The British Academy’s recent report, Lost for Words,identified some of these languages, such as Kurdish and regional varieties of Arabic, as strategically important to the UK’s diplomacy and security, yet ‘asset language’ qualifications in UK schools have been discontinued. In a period of heightened tension around questions of  immigration, the association of languages and national identity has further exacerbated the issue.

The panel will explore debates regarding community languages, examining:

  • the role of policy-makers and the education system in supporting and making best use of them
  • the impact of public perception and how to engage with languages in the public sphere to increase awareness and understanding of their centrality to civil and civic life.


  • Michael Skapinker (Financial Times)


  • Professor Angela Creese (University of Birmingham)
  • Dr Dina Mehmedbegovic (Institute of Education)
  • Dr Charlotte Schulz (Chair of the Association of German Saturday Schools)
  • Olga Bramley (the London School or Russian Language and Literature)

Translating Cultures
In a world seen to be increasingly characterized by transnational and globalized connections, the need for understanding and communication within, between and across diverse cultures is stronger than ever. The Arts and Humanities Research Council’s ‘Translating Cultures’ theme addresses this context by studying the role of translation, understood in its broadest sense, in the transmission, interpretation, transformation and sharing of languages, values, beliefs, histories and narratives. The almost ninety grants awarded under the theme to date have addressed numerous sites, locations and zones in which translation occurs, and have contributed to our knowledge of the role of translation and multilingualism in frames ranging from the global and regional to the national and local.

Languages and Quantitative Skills Programme
In 2011, the British Academy launched a programme, with funding from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, to address the deficit in languages and quantitative skills in UK education and research. Recognising that these deficits are rooted in the way in which these disciplines and skills are taught at every level – from school to undergraduate degrees and beyond – the Academy is supplying leadership to help strengthen skills in these vital areas. We engage in both high level activity, working with key stakeholders with the aim of facilitating greater change and deepening awareness within relevant communities; and through identifying and promoting best practice, and supporting research and scholarship.
To register please contact the British Academy Conference Desk on


Tel: 020 8542 7622

Community languages: policy, pedagogy, public understanding is part of the British Academy and Guardian Language Festival 2014. 

CFP: Auslandsgermanistik: The Academy and Anglo-German Relations around 1900 (and since)

A one-day conference at the Department of German, University College London, 29th June 2015

In the late nineteenth century, German departments opened across the United Kingdom. But these were not simply the export of an emergent ‘Germanistik’ to the British Isles, for the ways in which literature was read (and language was taught) here had to also be reconciled with specifically British, and even institutionally specific, practices. Indeed, “around 1900” saw the establishment of a new subject, but one which has never really been autonomous: Auslandsgermanistik. Around the same time, the English Goethe Society was founded (1886). While this in part merely followed the Goethe Gesellschaft that had been set up in Germany the year before, the English version also understood itself as mediating German culture for an English public – and not only an academic one. Our symposium aims to analyze these spaces in which German, its language and its culture were “studied” and disseminated in the UK at the turn of the nineteenth century. We shall thereby explore Anglo-Cultural relations in this period primarily with respect to scholarly institutions, and so we are interested in how such German departments and societies “abroad” in the UK contributed both to domestic ideas of scholarship or the University more broadly, as well to the reception of German culture in British society at large. This also leads us to the question of how the historical idiosyncrasies of the relationship between British and German “German Studies” have influenced the ways in which our discipline is (still) practiced today.

Topics may include, but are not restricted to, the following questions:

–      What were the influences of the German university system on UK institutions more generally around 1900?

–      What were the cultural, social, political reasons for establishing German within universities? What were the target   groups of students?

–      What were the areas of German Studies that English ‘Auslandsgermanistik’ primarily focused on? What were popular areas of research / topics for theses?

–       From a gender perspective, what was the role of women in teaching, studying, research and/dissemination?

–       How does the (historically conditioned) relationship between ‘Inlands’- and ‘Auslandsgermanistik’ compare with similar tensions in, say, French studies or English Studies after post-colonialism and an acceptance of other Englishes?

A publication of the contributions in a conference volume is planned.

The conference is organized by Séan Williams (University of Bern)  and Dagmar Paulus (UCL). Please send a short proposal (appr. 300 words) for a 20-minute presentation to Dagmar Paulus ( by 19th January 2015.

Translating Cultures: November 2014 theme leadership update

Two workshops in October – kindly hosted by the Institute of Modern Languages Research – allowed groups of researchers funded under the Translating Cultures theme to meet, share ideas and discuss the progress of their work. This opportunity was particularly welcomed by those teams awarded research innovation grants as they prepare to launch their projects. These eight projects respond specifically to priorities identified by the theme’s advisory group, relating to the dynamics and mechanics of ‘translating cultures’. Collectively they will extend the theme’s range of enquiry into geographical areas previously under-represented, such as South America (‘The Art of Cultural Exchange’, and ‘Translating cultures and the legislated mediation of indigenous rights in Peru’), and also permit exploration of new disciplinary intersections, such as that between translation studies and disability studies (‘Translating the Deaf Self’), or between translation and questions of religious belief and conversion (‘Conversion, Translation and the Language of Autobiography’).  There is also a considerable emphasis on translation and questions of cultural value, with projects on ‘From Dark Tourism to Phoenix Tourism’ and ‘Translating the Literatures of Small European Nations’. ‘Translating science for young people’ explores the translational dimensions of science communication, and ‘Child language brokering’ highlights the often previously invisible work of child interpreters. This diverse range of projects will not only enhance the visibility of the theme across a range of contexts and subject areas, but also allow considerable development of ‘translating cultures’ as a collaborative intellectual project that continues to address areas of urgent academic and public concern.

A second workshop brought together representatives of the three theme large grant teams, all of which now have their own websites on which their diverse and emerging activity is captured: Researching Multilingually at the Borders of Language, the Body, Law and the State; Transnationalizing Modern Languages: Mobility, Identity and Translation in Modern Italian Cultures; and Translation and translanguaging: Investigating linguistic and cultural transformations in superdiverse wards in four UK cities. The interconnections between these projects are becoming increasingly apparent, and all of them are actively rethinking the place of languages and multilingualism in Arts and Humanities research, and indeed beyond. The large grants are also all contributing to the AHRC’s Being Human Festival, with a range of events including ‘Translating Voice: A workshop and reading with Simon Armitage’ in Birmingham, ‘Language Fest’ in Glasgow, and ‘Migration Lives’ in St Andrews.

‘Translating cultures’ continues to develop collaborations with a range of external partners. Since September, I have delivered a series of presentations on the theme (and also had a chance to meet award holders) at a number of institutions, including Exeter, Kent and UEA. I additionally spoke on ‘translating cultures’ during the Canford Festival in October. The findings of the series of seminars on ‘Making History Work: The value of history and intercultural knowledge in the policy process’, co-organized with the Institute for Government, will be published next month, in time we hope to inform discussions post-REF2014 of the place of the Arts and Humanities in policy-related impact, and a further panel – on ‘Community languages: policy, pedagogy, public understanding’ – is planned with the British Academy as part of the annual BA/Guardian language festival later this month.



Search OpenEdition Search

You will be redirected to OpenEdition Search