Discourses of Sustainability

There is a close connection between language and society and a two-way relationship exists between each. Language performs various functions in society and society in turn shapes our use if language. One does not exist without the other. Biological changes and changes to the physical environment through, for example, resource extraction, habitat destruction, flooding and temperature fluctuations can also impact on the social, cultural and sociolinguistic life of a community. Social and material changes, including environmental issues, are also mediated and affected through a range of language practices and the circulation, interconnections and potential disconnects between these.

This theme explores links between nature, environmental sustainability and linguistic (and cultural) diversity. In this research cluster, our aim is to generate dialogue around the impact of changes to the physical environment in Scotland and beyond in times of global climate change and the knock-on effects this may have on contemporary societies.

2020 Events

Sustainability, Diversity and the Pandemic: The "Discourses of Sustainability" Arts Lab theme, in collaboration with the SMLC SocioLang research cluster, is hosting a series of Zoom discussions on how the current pandemic is reframing our thinking around links between nature, environmental sustainability and diversity (linguistic, cultural, biological). Contact Bernie O'RourkeTom Bartlett or Guillem Colom-Montero.

Tourism, Economy and Language

When: Friday 26thJune 2020 11:00 - 12:00 on Zoom

Alasdair C. Whyte will talk about Tourism, economy and language in the Highlands and Islands in the age of coronavirus.

 

Overtourism and Tourismphobia

When: Friday 5th June 11:00 – 12:00 

Dr Guillem Colom-Montero, "Overtourism and Tourismphobia in the Catalan Mediterranean in the Age of Coronavirus"

 

2019 Events

Scoping Meeting for "Discourses of sustainability: Interconnections between language, society and the environment” theme

When: Monday 1st July 2019

Where: Gilmorehill Halls 217, followed by a networking lunch

Description: The aim of the proposed research theme is to build collaborations in the Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences and develop new collaborative pathways with scholars in the Natural Sciences and STEM. There have been significant changes to the linguistic ecologies of our contemporary societies as a result of globalisation, increased mobility and transnational networking. Even though there is robust evidence that linguistic sustainability is an important part of social cohesion and of economic value, the management of multilingualism, from public services to industry consumption or the media, remains poorly understood. Changes to the physical environment in times of global climate change can also have knock-on effects on the cultural and linguistic sustainability of our societies. We recognise the need to address the way in which social and material changes, including environmental issues, are mediated and affected through a range of language practices and the circulation, interconnections and potential disconnects between these. The research theme will situate discussions around language, society and the environment in the context of these broader debates around social cohesion, equality and sustainability.

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