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LANGUAGE, CONFLICT AND SECURITY

 

LANGUAGE, CONFLICT AND SECURITY
University of Cambridge 10-11 April, 2010 Call for Papers:
Language, Conflict and Security in the Middle East

10-11 April, 2010
University of Cambridge
The Department of Middle Eastern Studies, and the Centre for Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, invites papers to be presented at an international conference on Middle Eastern Studies. The focus will be on Language, Conflict and Security in the Middle East. Papers can range from early modern period to contemporary times and are encouraged to be in ­ but not limited to ­ the fields of:

1. Language and Security - Linkages, Contradictions, and Influences: The conference would seek to highlight these subjects by bringing together academic researchers, policy makers and field officers to debate concepts such as "military intelligence", "terrorism", "security", "language policies", "foreign language acquisition" and the seam-lines they share. We will try to understand why do we learn foreign languages? What is the influence of security considerations on language policies? Who are our language teachers? What are the difficulties in studying the "language of the enemy"?

2. Language and Conflict: Political conflicts influence over our most basic needs: life, land, movement, and liberty. However, they have also crucial influence over our languages: The idioms, in which we speak, the terminology we use, the languages we choose to ignore, and the linguistic capabilities that our governments encourage. We will strive to comprehend how do conflicts change our perceptions of studying foreign languages? When can language be a bridge? And how does it turn into a an instrument?

3. Security and Beyond: Security is not only connected to military intelligence, sed to military intelligence, secret services, and armies. This conference would attempt to broaden the conceptual definitions of the field of security studies by highlighting the role of language in this field of research. We would strive to discuss this triangle - of language, security and conflict in a broader sense than usual, challenging the way we usually perceive them. In which way security considerations are actually present in the very fabric of society? What is the impact of "security" in journalism, religion, translation or language acquisition? Who prevent our access to knowledge and information, and is it relate to "security"?

Abstracts should be sent by email to Yonatan Mendel (
yym20@cam.ac.uk)
latest by 30th November, 2009. Submissions should be no more than 300 words in MS Word or PDF format, and should include your name, affiliation and academic institution. Applicants will be notified by December 10th 2009 regarding the outcome of their applications. Each speaker will be allotted 20 minutes for the presentation followed by 10
minutes for questions. Graduate students are encouraged to apply.

Two nights’ accommodation in Cambridge, including all meals, will be provided for speakers. Graduate students are encouraged to apply.

Sincerely,
Yonatan Mendel (co-organizer)
On behalf of Prof. Yasir Suleiman, Head of Department and Centre of Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge.

Yonatan Mendel
University of Cambridge
Department of Middle Eastern Studies,
Sidgwick Avenue
Cambridge CB3 9DA
UK

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