‘Modern languages’ and ‘Community languages’: A plea for a domestic language policy agenda

While enrolment in Modern Languages courses at secondary school and university has been in decline for more than a decade, the number of pupils attending supplementary (weekend) language schools is rising. Yaron Matras, who leads the Multilingual Communities strand of the AHRC-OWRI consortium Cross-Language Dynamics: Re-Shaping Community, calls for a research and public engagement strategy that embraces community language initiatives, and for a national language policy that gives more attention to the domestic arena. Read the full text here.

Call for Papers: Rethinking Language and Community. Diversity in Global Settings

Abstracts are invited for an inter-disciplinary conference on “Rethinking Language and Community: Diversity in Global Settings”, which will take place on 16 and 17 May 2019 at The University of Manchester.

The purpose of this conference is to explore and discuss different and new ways of understanding ‘community’ in its relationship with language, and to critically assess the notion’s relevance in times of superdiversity. We aim to bring together PhD students and early career researchers working on the topic or related aspects from across disciplines, including language, linguistics, literary and cultural studies, film/media studies, area studies, migration studies, human geography, ethnography and anthropology.

Abstracts of 250-300 words (excluding bibliography) should be sent to mlm@manchester.ac.uk by 22 March 2019. Please use ‘Community Conference 2019’ in the subject heading and include authors’ names, affiliation and contact details in your abstract.

Please see the full Call for Papers here: http://mlm.humanities.manchester.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/CfP-Rethinking-Language-and-Community.pdf

International Mother Language Day 2019

On 21st February 2019, Manchester will celebrate International Mother Language Day with exciting events taking place across the city.

Activities include fun, family-friendly games, crafts and performances, a panel discussion, workshops and a multilingual mushaira.

An online programme, with more details of the events, is available here.

Event: ‘Mancunian Tongues: Why language diversity matters for Manchester’

To celebrate UNESCO International Mother Language Day, Multilingual Manchester is hosting a public discussion event, ‘Mancunian Tongues: Why language diversity matters for Manchester’. The event will take place on Thursday 21 February 2019, 6:30pm, at Central Library (Performance Space), and the speakers are:

– Esme Ward, Director, Manchester Museum

– Lemn Sissay MBE, Author and Chancellor of The University of Manchester

– Councillor Luthfur Rahman, Executive Member for Schools, Culture and Leisure, Manchester City Council

The event is free to attend and open to all! Please register in advance on Eventbrite: http://manctongues.eventbrite.co.uk