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French in multilingual urban centers: call for papers

Ultima actualizare: 4 Apr 2018

Aston University, Birmingham (UK)

Wednesday 12th – Thursday 13th September 2018

Pour voir la version française de cette page, cliquez ici.  


This two-day conference will conclude two pilot studies, French as Spoken in Brussels, funded by the British Academy (2013-2016) and Back for the future of the Corpus de français parlé à Bruxelles, funded by the Modern Humanities Research Association (2017-2018). The first project aimed to conduct, to transcribe and to disseminate online sociolinguistic interviews with born and bred inhabitants of Brussels in order to provide an authentic snapshot of French as it is spoken nowadays in Brussels, the second to make available online the transcriptions of ethnolinguistic interviews collected in Brussels in 1989.

In addition to presenting the projects’ results, the conference’s purposes are to offer networking opportunities to researchers working on French in multilingual urban centres, and a springboard for new collaborations and research directions.

Call for papers

The conference welcomes any presentation on French in a multilingual urban environment, irrespective of its focus: contact phenomena, changes or linguistic planning.  Presentations about existing or planned corpora and resources are welcome. More specifically, the programme will revolve around 4 specific areas

Research Strands

Invited speakers

Helene Blondeau

Hélène Blondeau (University of Florida) is Assistant Professor at the University of Florida. She gained in 2000 a PhD in linguistic anthropology from the University of Montréal where she was involved in various research projects and trained in variationist sociolinguistics, including specific statistical tools such as Goldvarb. She is currently a co-investigator in a major research project on French on the American continent (Le français à la mesure d’un continent) led by Prof. France Martineau, where her main focus is on Montreal.

Rudi Janssens

Rudi Janssens (Vrije Universiteit Brussels) studied sociology at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. In 1995 he obtained his PhD, 'A Boolean Approach to Attitude Measurement'. He is professor of multilingualism at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and works as a senior researcher at the Brussels Information, Documentation and Research Centre (BRIO) where he is in charge of the language-sociological research strand. He mainly works on language use in multilingual and multicultural urban centres, and on the impact of language policies. He has already conducted several language surveys on language use, language shift and language and identity. He is a member of the MIME-Consortium (Mobilities and Integration in a Multilingual Europe) funded by the 7th Framework Program of the EU.


Organising Committee

Emmanuelle Labeau ; Anne Dister ; Said Djama Dirie ; Wilson Douce; Mathilde Guardiola (MHRA Research Assistant); Ghizlane Lafdi ; Qioachao Zhang. 

Scientific Committee (in development)

Mathieu Avanzi (Université de Neuchâtel), Hélène Blondeau (University of Florida), Maria Candea (Paris 3 – Sorbonne Nouvelle); Anne Dister (Université Saint-Loui, Bruxelles), Gaetane Dostie, Françoise Gadet, Philippe Hambye (Université Catholique de Louvain), Emmanuelle Labeau, Florence Lefeuvre v, Daniel McAuley (Université de Sherbrooke); Mat Pires (Universit’e de Franche-Comté), Wim Remijsen (Université de Sherbrooke), Mireille Tremblay (Universit’e du Québec à Montréal).


  • A 400-word abstract (excluding references) will provide the background for the paper, the research question(s) and an overview of the results.
  • It will be submitted through Easychair, by 30th April 2018. 


  • 30th April 2018: Abstract Submission
  • 31st May 2018: Acceptation notification
  • 1st June 2018: registration opens
  • 30th June 2018: Confirmation of participation and Final programme
  • 12th-13th September 2018: Conference