You will find details of events as well as webinars and videos of our seminar series and workshops here. For details of Monash-hosted events, please visit the MITN Monash website.
“Why do I have to uncover my upper body? Where will I sleep? Why am I getting this injection? What will happen with my luggage?”: Action research into multilingual communicative needs and practices in the Arrival Centre of the federal agency responsible for the reception of asylum seekers
Dr Antoon Cox, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and KU Leuven
Dr Koen Kerremans, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Webinar - Wednesday 1st December 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
When applicants for international protection arrive in Belgium, they first go to the Arrival Centre in Brussels to start their application procedure. At the Arrival Centre, the federal agency responsible for the reception of asylum seekers (Fedasil) carries out a medical and social screening of applicants and checks whether they are entitled to reception during the examination of their application for protection. In this highly stressful context for people seeking international protection, it is evident that good information provision can make a world of difference. Still, this is highly challenging in a context where multilingualism and intercultural diversity are the rule rather than the exception.
In this presentation, we will discuss findings and experiences of an ongoing study on multilingual needs and practices during the medical and social screening of applicants at the Arrival Centre. The research aims, on the one hand, to gain a better understanding of the communication needs of applicants with a vulnerable linguistic profile and, on the other hand, to use these insights to develop more targeted multilingual information provision, taking into account the different linguistic and cultural backgrounds and different literacy levels of this target group.
To join our Teams webinar, please click here slightly before the start time and do let us know if you experience any difficulties in joining. It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance that you plan to join.
Adult ESOL during the Covid-19 pandemic: Teachers’ perceptions of learners’ motivation
Kathryn Sidaway, University of Warwick
Webinar - Wednesday 17th November 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Adult ESOL in England is accessible for anyone for whom English is not their first language. These learners come from all over the world and have migrated for a range of reasons such as claiming asylum, seeking employment or re-joining family members. Once they reach the B1/B1+ level, they are no longer learning for survival and their reasons for learning can be wide ranging.
Inspired by the work of Glas (2016), in November 2020, during the second lockdown in England, I interviewed 17 ESOL teachers to investigate their perceptions of the learners’ reasons for studying, the impact of the pandemic and the reasons some students succeed whilst others fail at this level. At the time of interviewing, seven were still teaching in classrooms, eight were teaching online and two were offering a blended approach. All had taught online during the first lockdown from March to July 2020.
In this talk, I will give an overview of the themes emerging from the interviews and discuss the factors that motivate and demotivate adult learners in this context. Ushioda’s (2009) 'Person-in-context' approach was utilised to guide the analysis as a reminder that the learners in focus are not just students but are people with complex histories and lives outside the classroom. Resilience emerged as a major theme with the students supporting each other and discovering new ways of practising English online, while the teachers were adapting their teaching styles for both the online environment and socially distanced classrooms.
To join our Teams webinar, please click here slightly before the start time and do let us know if you experience any difficulties in joining. It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance that you plan to join.
Metaphor, metonymy, and migration: Implications for language teachers
Dr Theresa Catalano, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Webinar - Wednesday 3rd November 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Increased global migration due to a variety of factors points to the need for language teachers to understand the experiences of their students in order to serve them better. Dr Catalano begins by defining and explaining the cognitive processes of metaphor and metonymy and what they contribute to understanding migrant experiences. She then shares excerpts from interviews with migrants around the world, examining them through the lens of metaphor and metonymy and inviting discussion of what they mean for language teaching (or for any teachers that encounter students with similar experiences). The webinar will conclude with suggestions for reflecting on our own language used to talk about our students and the ideologies that color them as well as how we can be conscious of the way others use language to talk about migrants and migration issues and the consequences of this language.
To join our Teams webinar, please click here slightly before the start time and do let us know if you experience any difficulties in joining. It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance that you plan to join.
Translating the literatures of stateless cultures in Spain: Cultural diplomacy, translation grants and the publishing industry
Dr Olga Castro, University of Warwick
Webinar - Wednesday 13th October 2021, 17:00-18:00 BST
Literary translation plays a crucial role in the internationalisation of cultural and publishing markets. It constitutes a marker of status in the economic global system, therefore contributing to cultural diplomacy. As such, source-culture institutions often offer support policies to help disseminate ‘their’ literatures abroad. Focusing on contemporary multilingual Spain, this paper will investigate the translation policies of the Basque Country, Catalonia, Galicia and Valencia, where literature in Spanish coexists with the literatures written in the co-official languages in these regions, paying special attention to the translation grants funding schemes. Through the holistic study of the different stages of this funding scheme —from the design and publication of the translation grants to the allocation of funding, also including the participation of the four funding institutions at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2018— I combine quantitative and qualitative methods with ethnographic research to offer unique insights into the extent to which translation grants from each of the source cultures can successfully contribute to the internationalisation of literatures in these stateless cultures and less translated languages. This project also offers revealing information about the particularities of the collaboration between institutional funding bodies and the private publishing industry in these regions.
The Arabian Nights in contemporary world cultures: Global commodification, translation, and the culture industry
Prof Muhsin Jassim al-Musawi, Columbia University, USA
Webinar - Monday 11th October 2021, 20:00-21:00 BST/Tuesday 12th October, 6:00-7:00 AEST
Text to be discussed: 'The Arabian Nights in contemporary world cultures: Global commodification, translation, and the culture industry'here slightly before the start time and do let us know if you experience any difficulties in joining. It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance that you plan to join.
Migrants’ digital practices in/of the European border regime
Dr Martin Bak Jørgensen, DEMOS, Aalborg University
Webinar - Wednesday 29th September 2021, 9:00-10:00 BST/18:00-19:00 AEST
In this talk I will outline and discuss the DIGINAUTS Project. The aim of DIGINAUTS is to examine how migrants’ widespread, varied and innovative digital practices remake migration and potentially create networks of solidarity as migrants navigate through the European border regime. During the talk I will seek to answer how the project has helped us answer: How do migrants integrate ICT into migration practices, and how are existing digital platforms reconfigured for navigation and for creating solidarity networks? What are the challenges and potentials for aid workers as they relate (or fail to relate) to migrants’ digital practices? How can insight into migrants’ digital usages (en route and on site) lead to a better understanding of migrants’ routings, everyday practices and life conditions?
Perceptions of workplace soft skills in a vocational ESL program
Dr Julie Kerekes, University of Toronto
Webinar - Wednesday 23rd June 2021, 17:00-18:00 BST
In 2014, Kerekes began a collaboration, The Mesa Project, with an immigrant settlement organization in Ontario, Canada: University of Toronto (UT) students teamed up with Mesa Centre instructors and administrators who provided sector-specific English language courses for newcomers to Canada. Together they investigated Mesa’s approach to teaching soft skills, a buzzword among Toronto’s employers. As a result of this project, a number of University of Toronto students gained research experience applicable to their post-graduate professions, Mesa implemented curricular changes in their course offerings, and Mesa and UT’s collaboration – an instance of twinning beyond the university setting – continues.
The collaboration resulted in a rich set of classroom observation and interview data. Kerekes and her research assistant, Jeanne Sinclair, subsequently analyzed the data in order to better understand the role of soft skills instruction in the ideologies of immigrant success conveyed by Mesa Centre to its clientele. The original data collected by the student teams were reviewed, and their transcriptions were completed and refined. These included data from classroom observations, focus group discussions, and interviews conducted by the student researchers with the ESL students and instructors they had observed. Through this analysis, ideologies relating soft skills to “cultural fit” are revealed and discussed in the context of their significance for newcomers seeking employment in Canada.
Multilingualism in higher education: Challenges and opportunities
Dr Ann Peeters, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Webinar - Wednesday 9th June 2021, 17:00-18:00 BST
Over the past few decades, linguistic and cultural diversity have reshaped our societies and will most probably develop further, as a result of the combined forces of globalisation, technological advances, increased mobility and economic or political migration. Partly as a consequence of and partly as a response to this, the advance of multilingual education in primary, secondary and higher education has further contributed to the spread of multilingualism throughout the globe. The purpose of this talk is to reflect on both the challenges and opportunities posed by the organisation of multilingual programmes in higher education. (How) should we adapt our teaching practices to the students’ multilingual backgrounds? Does the creation of multilingual programmes threaten programmes taught in the national language? And how to cope with socio-political diversity in the student body?
Understanding Generation Z/M - beliefs, motivations, and student diversity: The relationship between friendship groups and modern university Muslim student identities
Fatema Khatun, Birmingham City University
Webinar - Wednesday 19th May 2021, 17:00-18:00 BST
From generation Jihad to generation M, the Muslim population of generation Z has had their entire educational journey framed in post 9/11 discourse. It has been evident that expressions of faith and belief have been bought into question across the U.K. with Counter Terrorism Acts, the 2012 Trojan Horse Scandal and the controversial Prevent agenda. Across Europe: ‘Germany, France, Switzerland and Denmark’ have legislation put into place prohibiting certain Islamic dress such as the burqa (Josh, 2019). In the UK, whilst such legislation has not been introduced the religious performances of young Muslim women are affected in public spaces by such as in the modern university. The hostility and uncertainty in politics mean that situations facing Muslim Women in the West are more complex than previously imagined (Lewis and Hamid, 2018). Despite this, according to Janmohamed (2016), they are proud of their faith, enthusiastic consumers, dynamic, engaged, creative and demanding. From experience in a modern Higher Education Institution (HEI), it has become apparent Muslim students often create friendships groups that become distinctly identifiable. The proposed route for this piece of research is an exploration of female friendship groups and the roles friendship networks in the creation of particular student-based identities. The objective of this study is to deconstruct previous negative construction of identity, utilising a feminist lens to explore the multiplicity of narratives as Generation Z British Asian Muslims in the 21st Century and propose alternative pedagogical practices which utilise the interactional qualities of said friendship networks to enhance student engagement.
Empirically documenting and assessing transcreation in the language industry
Prof Erik Angelone, Kent State University, USA
Webinar - Wednesday 5th May 2021, 17:00-18:00 BST
The advancement of artificial intelligence, and neural machine translation in particular, is bringing about a sea change in the language industry, resulting in a proliferation of career paths. Some are deeply impacted by the affordances and constraints of automation, while others largely circumvent it out of necessity. Recognizing this unprecedented degree and scope of change, Katan (2015) suggests that the field of Translation Studies has now entered a transcreational turn, marked by a shift in focus on language industry activity that calls for knowledge and skills rooted in creativity and intercultural competence, with transcreation being one of these core activities. This webinar will offer a deeper dive into the realities of transcreation, a form of mediation and adaptation in which new linguistic and cultural constructs are utilized when existing ones do not suffice (Gaballo, 2012; Pederson, 2016). It will explore how transcreation is undertaken and how it can be empirically documented and assessed from both product- and process-oriented perspectives.
Zero to Digital: Rescuing Endangered Language and Culture in the Digital Age
Prof Sue Ellen Wright, Kent State University, USA
Dr Craig Cornelius, Google
Webinar - Wednesday 17th March 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Smaller communities worldwide face many challenges in maintaining use and vitality of their languages. This two-part webinar will explore the Translation Commons Zero to Digital project to digitise indigenous languages and cultural resources. We will outline potential roadblocks and opportunities for progress for these languages and their future in a digital world.
Zero to Digital: A guide to bringing your language online
In the first part, we will discuss technology and techniques for supporting indigenous language communities, as outlined in Zero to Digital: A guide to bringing your language online. We describe resources and tools for standardization of scripts, fonts for displaying characters, and input methods. All of these are essential for everyday usage of language such as texting, email, websites, social media, etc. on all digital devices including mobile.
Zero to Digital 2: Capturing language content for use in digital environments
Further, we will present tools and procedures to collect linguistic and cultural information and to convert it to language resources. These can become digital content for creating glossaries, dictionaries, text collections (corpora), and even advanced analysis and translation tools for both academic research and community efforts to enable all languages to survive and thrive in the digital age.
Politics of Exhaustion: Entanglements of violence, control and resistance in Europe’s borderlands
Dr Leonie Ansems de Vries, King's College London
Webinar - Wednesday 3rd March 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Dr Leonie Ansems de Vries joins us to present her work on migration in Europe, including a screening of her video short Migrant Agency and the Moving Image.
This presentation and video screening focuses on the politics of exhaustion in migratory spaces of transit in Europe. Politics of exhaustion refers to the ways in which exhaustion is employed as a tool of governance to control people forced to (not-)move and how it is endured and resisted as a lived experience. It highlights the violent impacts of the management of movement; its accumulated effects over time and across spaces. The short video screening shows these practices at play in the informal migrant spaces in Northern France. Drawing on intersectional scholarship, the presentation will also discuss how strategies of exhaustion are disrupted and resisted by migrants and those supporting them, even though these struggles often remain closely entangled with violent bordering practices.
The individual odyssey in Theo Angelopoulos’ Trilogy of Borders: Languages, translation, silence
Dr Adriana Şerban, Paul-Valéry University Montpellier 3
Webinar - Wednesday 17th February 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
In this talk I will offer a few reflections on the question of journeys and border-crossings in Greek filmmaker Theodoros Angelopoulos’ Trilogy of Borders: The Suspended Step of the Stork (1991), Ulysses’ Gaze (1995) and Eternity and a Day (1998), and their subtitled translations into French and English. I shall focus on individual odysseys without attempting any generalisations in terms of what they may reveal about collective identities, which I find problematic for reasons I shall attempt to outline. Angelopoulos is a poet of the screen whose works of art are vehicles of discovery; he created an aesthetics of the journey which always involves languages, or silence, or both at the same time. Translating this kind of cinema is a poetic experience and a journey in its own right. But where does the road go?
Interdisciplinary Approaches to Studying Migration
Dr Eleanor Paynter, Cornell University
Webinar - Wednesday 10th February 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
This two-part talk is intended to offer openings for a discussion of how interdisciplinary approaches shape the production of knowledge in the field of migration studies. In the first part, I present my work on testimony as an interdisciplinary approach to migration studies. Here I focus on my current book project, Emergency in Transit, which explores the coloniality of migration "crises" through narrative, literary, and ethnographic study. In the second part of the talk, I share reflections from the classroom, thinking more broadly about teaching migration across disciplines. I draw especially from a recent course launched through Cornell's Migrations initiative, which approaches migrations as global, multidisciplinary, multi-species phenomena. More generally, this webinar aims to spark fruitful discussion with participants about the borders and discipline(s) of migration studies.
Teaching practices: Approaching international HE through lecturers’ experiences
Dr Hanne Tange, Aalborg University
Webinar - Wednesday 27th January 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
As a concept, ‘Teaching practices’ describe both the actual pedagogies adopted by academics engaged in the act of lecturing and the process of academic socialisation through which actors new to a particular academic programme, discipline or institution acquire the practical knowledge that distinguishes ‘good’ teachers and learners from those who ‘deviate’. In the talk I will explain how ‘teaching practices’ can be used as a starting point for theoretical and empirical work in the field of international HE. Arguably, this places academic staff at the centre of institutional internationalisation processes, acknowledging how their practice is simultaneously constituted by and constituting macro-level developments such as globalisation, academic migration and ‘Englishisation’ of research and education.
Querying internationalisation: The working lives of migrant academics in the UK
Dr Toma Pustelnikovaite, Abertay University
Webinar - Wednesday 20th January 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
The UK is regarded as one of the ‘centres’ of international academic mobility. The number of migrant academics in the UK has indeed been increasing over the last four decades, and currently academics from abroad comprise a third of UK’s academia (Lenihan and Witherspoon 2018). This presentation will explore the reasons why the number of migrant academics in the UK is growing, and the implications of this growth for the academic profession. Drawing on data from 62 interviews with migrant academics in the UK, this presentation will suggest that the number of migrant academics may be increasing because migrant academics get ‘stuck’ in the UK rather than because of good career opportunities. The increasing number of scholars from abroad threatens academia’s status quo, and the profession adapts by limiting the degree of migrant academics’ inclusion. This presentation will thus demonstrate nuances underlying the influx of migrant academics into the UK, and qualify claims about the complete internationalisation of academia.
An exploration of the psycho-social challenges of Muslim men in the UK in the age of Islamophobia
Durali Karacan, Brunel University London
Webinar - Wednesday 13th January 2021, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Islamophobia is a widely encountered contemporary phenomenon with many different patterns around the Western world. It influences Muslims in economic, social or public life and impacts negatively on their psychological health, family relations and daily lives, consequently damaging the social cohesion of the whole of society. The present study seeks to elicit information about the experiences of Muslim men in England (London and Birmingham) and to explore the complex and multidimensional challenges that they face. Specifically, it explores how their identity principles (continuity, self-esteem, self-efficacy and distinctiveness) are affected by their lived experiences and challenges (e.g. threats to their identity).
The phenomenon of Islamophobia is widely studied in the social sciences and lies at the crossroads of several disciplines such as psychology, social psychology, sociology, history, geography, politics, criminology, migration studies, minority studies, religious studies, gender studies, men studies, etc. The researcher here adopts an interdisciplinary approach drawing on social psychology and men studies (masculinities).
The researcher applies the Identity Process Theory (IPT), Connell’s Theory of Masculinity and Crenshaw’s Theory of Intersectionality to explore how the various identities such as race, ethnicity, gender, religion, immigrant status and class may present challenges to Muslim men in the UK in the age of Islamophobia. IPT seeks to elucidate and predict how individuals and groups respond to psychological threats, particularly threats to identity (Cinnirella, 2014: 255). A threat to identity emerges when the processes of assimilation/accommodation are irreconcilable with the principles of continuity, distinctiveness, self-efficacy, and self-esteem (Timotijevic & Breakwell, 2000: 357). The researcher applies IPT to identify how Islamophobia and other social factors may threaten the distinctiveness, continuity, self-esteem, self-efficacy, belonging, meaning and coherence principles of Muslim men’s identities and engender shifts in their identity.
The study employs Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) to shed light on the nature of Muslim men’s challenges in the UK. It uses semi-structured qualitative interviews to elicit information on the lived experiences of Muslim men in London and Birmingham who differ in their backgrounds, lifestyles, experiences, religiosity levels, understandings of Islam and social status.
The study uses interviews with 24 Muslim men drawn from three national groups; Pakistani, Somali and Algerian, which are selected for the following reasons. Firstly, the religiosity levels of these groups vary in terms of religious practising, loyalty to religious orders, dress codes and worldviews (secularism, political ideologies, etc.), which may affect their stance on Islamophobia. Secondly, their cultural background, lifestyles and level of participation in society differ, which may influence their experience of Islamophobia. Lastly, the researcher uses intersectionality theory (Crenshaw, 1990) to examine each group’s overlapping identity experiences and the challenges that they create.
The study explores what kinds of identity-related challenges the participants have experienced in the UK and how these challenges and other lived experiences affect their identity principles (continuity, self-esteem, self-efficacy and distinctiveness) and otherwise shape their thoughts, understandings and behaviours. It further explores how they socially and locally construct their masculine identities by examining how they apply locally hegemonic masculinities in their discourses and in-group, out-group and inter-group relations. Finally, it explores whether and how the interaction of their social locations and overlapping identities creates overlapping disadvantages and challenges for them and whether and how they develop coping strategies in response to challenges, such as re-evaluation tactics like strengthening their religious identity or foregrounding a particular aspect of their identity.
Dr Tommaso Milani, University of Gothenburg
Webinar - Wednesday 9th December 2020, 17:00-18:00
Dr Tommaso Milani joins us for a discussion of his joint book chapter Queering multilingualism and politics: Regimes of mobility, citizenship and (in)visibility (Milani & Levon, 2017). We encourage attendees to read this text prior to the webinar. To obtain a copy, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Multilingualism research has grown exponentially over the last three decades and has offered important insights into the complex psycho- and neurolinguistic, educational and sociolinguistic dimensions of the interplay between different languages in individuals and societies. Interestingly, however, the role played by sexuality in relation to multilingualism has remained somewhat unexplored in multilingualism research (see however Cashman 2017 for a notable exception). Against this background, the purpose of our chapter is to partially fill this gap by queering multilingualism. With the help of examples from a variety of contexts, this webinar will outline what a queering of multilingualism entails theoretically, methodologically and analytically.
The Gay Anthology: Translation, Identity and Homonationalism
Prof Brian Baer, Kent State University, USA
Webinar - Wednesday 2nd December 2020, 17:00-18:00
This talk situates the emergence of the gay anthology within the history of the anthology as a genre. Situated between monolingual anthologies, often associated with national literary traditions, and translation anthologies, often associated with world literature, the gay anthology paradoxically promotes an identitarian or minoritarian model of identity while also arguing for the universality of homosexuality, hence the very visible presence of translations in these anthologies. This talk explores the tension between these two paradigms as an unsettling queerness at the very origin of the gay liberation movement.
Youth Values and National Identity in the Balkans
Dr Tamara Pavasović Trošt, University of Ljubljana and Dr Danilo Mandić, Harvard University
Webinar - Wednesday 25th November 2020, 17:00-18:00 GMT
In their volume Changing Youth Values in Southeast Europe: Beyond Ethnicity (Routledge, 2018), Tamara Trošt and Danilo Mandić examined the extent to which ethnic and national values and identities were still the overriding focus in the lives of the region’s youth. Using intra-national and international ethnographic comparisons of youth populations of the Western Balkans, the authors tackled the questions of; which identities matter to youth in SEE? Is ethnicity still a dominant lens through which they view the world? What shapes the cultural, political and ideological values of young people living in Southeastern Europe? In this MITN webinar, Dr Mandić and Dr Trošt revisit these important questions, particularly reflecting on the role played by history and memory in crafting youths' ideas of ethnic belonging, and commenting on the dynamics of ethnic identity politics in relation to recent developments in the region, such as the migrant "crisis" and Covid-19.
Brasiguaios: Transnational Lives and Identities
Dr Marcos Estrada, University of Warwick
Webinar - Wednesday 18th November 2020, 17:00-18:00 GMT
Dr Marcos Estrada joins us for a screening and discussion of his award-winning documentary film 'Brasiguaios: Transnational Lives and Identities'.
Trailer accessible here: https://youtu.be/elI_oqgo3Lk
This documentary presents the stories of group of Brazilian returnees from Paraguay, whose migration experiences and identities spans across both countries, hence Brasiguaios (Brazilian + Paraguay). Individuals in the “‘Brasiguaios landless camp”, located approximately 100 kilometres away from Paraguay, present how their migration process is deeply influenced by the pursuit of land for agricultural production in Brazil and failure to succeed economically in Paraguay.
Teaching Multilingualism: Bridging theory and practice
Dr Shawn Gonzalez, Princeton University
Webinar - Wednesday 14th October 2020, 17:00-18:00
Streaming of Recording & Live Discussion - Wednesday 28th October, 9:00-10:00
Researchers in fields like sociolinguistics, education, and ethnic studies have convincingly exposed problems of language discrimination in higher education. However, even instructors with research interests in multilingualism face significant challenges to implementing change in the classroom. This seminar considers the contradictions of teaching multilingualism in literature and composition contexts and how they relate to challenges in other academic disciplines. Through this conversation, we will explore opportunities for early career researchers to leverage their research for equity in their own classrooms.
To join our Teams webinar streaming, please click here slightly before the start time and do let us know if you experience any difficulties in joining. It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance that you plan to join.
Turn-taking, Trust and Rapport in Virtual Team Meetings
Dr Sophie Reissner-Roubicek and Brianna Falconer-Nash
Webinar - Wednesday 8th July 2020
Preparing students for a world in which virtual is the “new normal” aligns with the academic goals that many of us and the universities we teach and research in have been pursuing for some time. Namely, to foster in our graduates the “ability to work collaboratively in teams of people from different backgrounds and countries”, the highest-ranked competency in Diamond et al.’s (2011) survey of global employers. This has increasingly come to mean working in different countries at the same time. As such, to foster the intercultural skills needed to function effectively in a globalising world, integrating some structured experience of virtual team communication is now essential. This presentation reports on the approaches, affordances and outcomes of three initiatives conducted in different disciplinary contexts. The aim is to show how participative pedagogies underpinned by insights from applied linguistics and importantly, informed by an understanding of the discursive turn in research on teamwork and leadership, have great potential to deepen student engagement and learning from such experiences. Trust, for example, is a hot topic in the literature on global virtual teams, but has mainly been researched from a psychological perspective. Equally valuable as exploring discursive strategies to promote rapport, and build trust, is the opportunity to experiment with different turn-taking patterns (Byrne & Fitzgerald, 1996) and reflect on how and in what ways these are disrupted by the virtual context. Trust, and turn-taking, while seemingly disparate, are both implicated in participative (in)equality and, it is argued, differently influenced by cultural orientation, so making students aware of how and why this can lead to the marginalisation of team members is particularly important. Part of this awareness is coming to understand the impact of one’s own communication.
The first initiative involved three student teams in three different countries, in a one-off funded project. The second and third involved a curriculum activity that has been running for the last four years with undergraduates on a 10-week module and postgraduates on an intensive 1-week module respectively, in each case entailing three diverse teams connecting from different rooms on campus. Evidence of the outcomes of these initiatives are presented variously in the form of written comments, comments captured in debriefing the activity, and insights from reflective essays in which participants discussed the implications of these experiences for virtual teamwork and leadership.
We will also report back on the IACCM Global Virtual Conference: LOST IN CONNECTION? Global Virtual Teams in Research, Higher Education and Business (June 26th)
To join our Teams webinar, please click here.
MITN photo competition – Can you capture Multilingualism?
Showcase and Announcement of Winners
Followed by a Webinar
Games Without Frontiers:
Multilingualism and Interdisciplinarity in Problem-Based Learning
Dr. Bryan Brazeau, SFHEA, FWIHEA, Senior Teaching Fellow, Liberal Arts,
Webinar - Tuesday 2nd June 2020
This talk explores how multilingual pedagogy may be successfully employed in an interdisciplinary, problem-based learning environment. Discussions of multilingual pedagogy often focus on second-language acquisition or on classrooms with students of mixed linguistic backgrounds. Building on such knowledge, this talk explores how we might activate elements of multilingual pedagogy in an interdisciplinary environment. Both approaches emphasize encouraging students to activate prior knowledge, to sound out the limits of their own understanding, and to engage with concepts (both linguistic and disciplinary) outside of their comfort zone. When applied within a problem-based learning environment, the combination of interdisciplinary and multilingual approaches fosters the development of intersubjective spaces that break down barriers, demonstrating what the French philosopher, Paul Ricoeur, refers to as “linguistic hospitality.” This talk will explore the above approach from both theoretical and applied perspectives, using in-class examples drawn from modules taught within Warwick’s Liberal Arts degree course.
What language skills do you need for working in Sweden? Migrating, manual workers’ professional language practices at construction sites
Linda Kahlin & Hedda Söderlundh
Digital language learning with Arabic speaking migrants
Linda Bradley, Faculty of Education, University of Gothenburg
Catering for the sizable number of migrants who have come to Europe from the Middle East is a huge challenge. Two areas that are mentioned as specifically important in terms of integration are learning the language and finding ways into professional life. Here, mobile technology can serve as a bridge to accessing language and work. This seminar addresses Arabic speaking migrants’ development of language and vocational skills and what role mobile technology can play as a mediator. Based on investigations of digital literacy among migrants in Sweden, the seminar will address affordances in mobile applications and online resources as tools for learning a new language and vocational skills.
Iraqi Women Uprising: Through Visual Arts on Murals and Creative Language on Signs
Zeena Faulk, University of Warwick, PhD Researcher
Thursday 27th February 2020 17.00-18.00, Social Sciences S0.09
On October 1, 2019, peaceful protests broke out in most Iraqi cities. The reasons for the protest include the dissatisfaction with the government’s performance, lack of jobs, extensive foreign meddling in Iraq, and oppression as well as lack of civil liberties. University students, professors and workers led the first wave of protests, signalling for the first time no allegiance to any political and/or religious groups. However, the Iraqi government’s unexpected crackdown on the protesters led to the Tishreen (October) uprising, which swiftly gained traction throughout Iraq, which forced the Iraqi Prime Minister Abdul Mahdi to resign. Since then, Iraqi women have been taking to the streets to participate in the uprising, organize groups, treat the injured, provide food, write graffiti and chant alongside defiant men. This involvement of women in Iraq’s current political quagmire is unprecedented, particularly in Baghdad where women express themselves through graffiti and creative language on the signs. In this seminar, we will be looking at how texts and images are used to represent women in the currently troubled Iraq, and what that means with respect to women’s involvement in Iraq’s future politics.
Zeena's postgraduate-level work with Dr Chantal Wright challenges the notion of cultural nontransferability of satire by focusing on the political satire of post-2003 Iraq. Iraq experienced an explosion of political satire following the 2003 invasion and occupation by western powers, a flowering that presents particular challenges for translation due to its heavy reliance on cultural background and fleeting political context. Using reader response theory, Zeena's work intends to show that it is possible to go around such limitations in creative ways, rendering this satirical and critical response to war understandable to those with limited knowledge of Arabic and Middle Eastern culture and history.
Emma Mort - Care4Calais – a practical, humanitarian response to the refugee crisis on our doorstep. Social Studies S0.09 17:00 - 18:00
Emma Mort is a teacher, member of the National Education Union National Executive and campaigner and activist who has taken part in 8 volunteering trips with Care4Calais in the last 2 years.
Since the ‘Calais jungle’ was cleared in October 2016, many people believe that the refugee crisis in Northern France is over, yet this couldn’t be further from the truth. Across Northern France and Belgium hundreds of refugees are still living in the most desperate circumstances, having already undertaken difficult and dangerous journeys, suffering cruel and degrading treatment by the French authorities.
In this seminar, Emma will be speaking about the vital work that Care4cCalais do in delivering aid and support to refugees living in these conditions across Northern France and Belgium. In addition, she will be sharing her experiences of the practicalities of organising and delivering this aid as well as giving an insight into what life is like inside a refugee camp only 30 miles from the UK border. There will also be a chance to consider the importance of the humanitarian aspect to delivering aid and the Care4Calais ethos of treating everyone with dignity, recognising our common humanity and building relationships in order to provide essential social interaction and the much-needed help that other organisations aren’t able to.
This will be followed by a chance to ask questions about any issues that have been raised during the course of the seminar.
Lost in Translation - Workshop with Piers Ibbottson
Performing Shakespeare in other languages.
Wednesday 5th February 2020 9.30-11.30, WBS Create
In this workshop we will look at the challenge of performing Shakespeare in translation.
One approach to the performing of Shakespeare pioneered by the Royal Shakespeare Company under the guidance of the renowned scholar and director John Barton and voice coach Cicely Berry, focused on the plays as spoken poetry. They focused on the language and developed an approach to performance that honoured the auditory nature of Elizabethan theatre (as opposed to visual) and emphasised the powerful and extraordinary poetry of Shakespeare. This was a shift away from modernism and the psychological approach taken by contemporary playwrights of the 50’s and 60’s when their work was being developed. Their emphasis on the text and the structure of the poetry, led to the development of an approach to acting and to training actors that encouraged a visceral, embodied connection with the language.
The workshop will use some of their methods and approaches in a practical, participatory session in which we will explore the connection between voice, verse and emotion.
We will then look at different translations of the same piece of text to investigate the impact on both the speaker and the audience of the same dramatic moment articulated in different languages: We will
Experience the embodiment of vowels and consonants in different languages
Investigate the ways different languages express emotion through sound
Examine speech acts and the ways they are embodied differently in different language
Explore the impact of the specific language on the manner and the content of an emotional moment
Examine different translations and their impact on our understanding in performance
Feedback from the workshop
'I really enjoyed the workshop in the sense that it led us to explore the musicality of different languages. It helped me realized the non-translatable part between languages and made me think about what was missing in traditional ways of language teaching and learning. It is also quite interesting to know that this project is aimed to help across-culture communication in the business field since the problem might originate from our mindset for language teaching, which put too much attention to "meaning decoding" instead of cracking and embracing the uniqueness of different languages. I am interested in participating in workshops like this in the future.'
' I really enjoyed the workshop, I thought that the facilitator was incredibly knowledgeable and engaging. At multiple times while I was watching, I found myself wishing I were there in person to participate!
Many of the translations that were read were in Italian, so maybe there was that extra element of enjoyment for me as I was able to appreciate the difference between the English original and the Italian translation. But I also enjoyed when one of the participants read her translation of Shakespeare in Arabic. I have a very basic knowledge of Arabic but I was still able to appreciate the difference in the sound of the translation. I think it was a workshop that everyone could enjoy regardless of their language combination.'
On Tuesday 28th January, we are pleased to welcome Prof Janice Carruthers, Professor of French Linguistics at Queen's University Belfast and Leader of the Sociolinguistics Strand of the major interdisciplinary project Multilingualism: Empowering Individuals, Transforming Societies (MEITS). It is her involvement with this project that forms the basis of our seminar. This is an excellent opportunity to engage with current research into how multilingual individuals and societies draw on multiple languages, cultures and modes of thought.
This Tuesday - Seminar - Dr. Joanne Lee
Language, memory and migration in the novels of Laura Pariani
Tuesday 14th Jan 2020 -16.00-17.00, Social Sciences A1.11
Photos from the event
Seminar - Award Winning Author and Activist Dr. Preti Taneja
The Syrian Conflict: How to Form Research Responses via Fieldwork with Refugees
Thursday 9th January 2020, Social Sciences, Cowling Room S2.77, 17.00-18.00
From 2017-19 she held a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellowship at Warwick University, and was the UNESCO Fellowship in Prose Fiction at the University of East Anglia. In 2020 she will be writer in residence for TIDE (Travel, Transculturality and Identity 1500-1700) at the University of Oxford. She also teaches creative writing in HMP Whitemoor for Learning Together, University of Cambridge.
Seminar - International Artist and Activist Salma Zulfiqar
20th November 2019, 17.00-18.00 in Social Sciences A1.11
You can book a place by emailing MITN@Warwick.ac.uk or by booking on via SkillsForge. The event is free but we need numbers for catering and logistics so please let us know if you can join us.
Salma Zulfiqar is an International Artist and Activist working on migration. She will be speaking about her Migration Project and her work with Migrants and Refugees in the UK with relation to social inclusion and more recently about her lobbying at the EU Parliament. She will also be introducing her new film ' We are searching for life - Refugees ' a short spoken word film which calls for safe Migration and explores the issue of social cohesion of Syrian refugees in Birmingham. Please see the film here. Salma will also be sharing her experiences of working with migrants and refugees with the United Nations all over the world. This will be followed by a Q&A.
Salma's current creative projects, such as ARTconnects & The Migration Blanket, focus on empowering refugee and migrant women by promoting integration, working towards preventing hate crimes and extremism. Her artwork has been exhibited in London, Birmingham, Paris, Greece & Dubai and she has been celebrated as one of Birmingham's most inspirational women in the book Once Upon A Time in Birmingham - Women Who Dared to Dream. Salma has also worked all over the world with the United Nations raising awareness of humanitarian issues in conflict and developing countries such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Syria, Egypt, Somalia, Chad and Kenya.
MITN Welcome and Find out More Event
15th November 2019 11.00 - 13.00 in Social Sciences A0.14
We would love to see you there, whether you are an old MITN hand or a new face. You can book a place by emailing MITN@Warwick.ac.uk or by booking on via SkillsForge. The event is free but we need numbers for catering and logistics so please let us know if you can join us by 11th November 2019.
11.00 - 11.20 Introduction from Prof. Jo Angouri
11.20-11.30 Helena Wall, PG Student Representative and leader of the research cluster: Space, Place and the city
11.30-12.15 Liberty Melly (The Migration Museum https://www.migrationmuseum.org/)
Why Britain needs a Migration Museum
Britain has thousands of museums, but none focused on migration, a vital topic that goes to the heart of who we are, where we’ve come from and where we’re going – as individuals, as communities and as a nation. Liberty Melly, Education and Events Manager at the Migration Museum Project, will explain what brought a dedicated team of people from a wide range of professional backgrounds together to work towards the creation of a new national museum that can provide a setting to explore how the movement of people to and from Britain across the ages has shaped who we are, away from the polarised and often angry debates about migration in politics and the media.
12.15 -12.25 Christina Efthymiadou - Leader of the research cluster: Identity and Workplace Communication
12.25-12.35 Zeena Faulk - Leader of the research cluster: Translation and Mobility
12.35 -13.00 Coffee and networking opportunity
Photos from the event