Petición de contribuciones (revista)Infoling 9.30 (2020)

Subtítulo:Key aspects of 21st century informal interactions: Socio-pragmatic and formal features
Año de publicación:2021

Dear colleagues,


The first two decades of the current 21st century have evidenced important sociocultural changes in (Western) society, with inevitable impact on linguistic habits. One of the most striking changes is, undoubtedly, the unstoppable expansion of mass media, in particular that of social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (Jenkins 2009). In terms of society impact, this is strongly changing everyday interaction and communication. More specifically, the rise of new digital communication forms entails an ongoing informalization and colloquialization of language practices, with a constant redefinition and crossing of boundaries between written and oral registers (e.g. De Smet & Enghels in press).


Indeed, as speakers enter more than ever into indirect interaction with others, through e-mail and other message delivery services like WhatsApp and Messenger (to name a few), traditional conversational strategies and practices have been challenged, reconsidered and adapted to these new trends of indirect communication. At the linguistic level, this new (interactional) panorama results in, among other things, the productive use of a highly expressive vocabulary including intensifiers and taboo words (Jørgensen 2013; Gutzmann 2019), of terms of address expressing affection and closeness (Kluge & Moyna 2019), and of discourse markers serving various interactional functions (such as turn-taking) (Landone 2012). Moreover, present-day interactions tend to be highly spontaneous and subjective, favouring personal and intimate conversation topics (Goodman & Graddol 1996). The omnipresence and the protagonist role of youngsters in this new digital era contribute to their role as linguistic innovators. Indeed, many linguistic tendencies originating in teenage talk tend to be introduced and spread into more general language use (e.g. Zimmermann 2002; Tagliamonte 2016; Roels & Enghels in press).


Besides, not only mass media but also the availability and widespread use of streaming services, such as Netflix and YouTube, ensures that people get acquainted with other languages and cultures, resulting in increasing language contact, which has an unavoidable impact on many languages, with English as a lingua franca (e.g. Jenkins 2007).


Until now, besides analyses of face to face interactions as attested in corpus data (i.a. Stenström & Jørgensen 2011), several scholars have examined the language practices in social media (i.a. Hilte et al. 2016; Rueda & Alamán 2013), as well as in television series (i.a. Bednarek 2019). Regarding the latter, special attention is paid to the question of how useful the language of television shows can be for linguistic research.


Still, many features of present-day informal interactions remain undocumented and underexplored. Therefore, the main purpose of this Special Issue consists in reporting on the main interests and developments in this emerging research field.


More specifically, this Special Issue is devoted to research on the key aspects of present-day informal interactions, from different perspectives, applying different methodologies and within different theoretical frameworks. In short, we welcome a wide range of (relevant) topics, which may include (but are not limited to):

1. (socio-)pragmatic, morpho-syntactic and semantic features of present-day informal interactions (e.g. discourse markers, terms of address, intensifiers, taboo words etc.)

2. particularities of 21st century language use

3. phenomena of recent language change

4. the language of social media and its influence on informal conversations in general

5. consequences of increasing language contact

6. the role of youth languages in (recent) language change

7. (recent) processes of grammaticalization in spoken language  (e.g. the fuzzy boundaries between vocatives and discourse markers)


We especially encourage linguists working on Romance languages to submit their work, but relevant papers on all other languages are welcome as well.


Interested authors are requested to submit a proposed title and an abstract of around 500 words summarizing their intended contribution, prior to preparing their manuscripts. Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editors and the journal's editorial team, and then full manuscripts will be solicited. Please send the abstract to and Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editors for the purposes of ensuring proper fit within the scope of the special issue. Full manuscripts will undergo double-blind peer-review.


Abstract submission deadline: October 31, 2020

Notification of abstract acceptance: November 15, 2020

Full manuscript deadline: May 15, 2021

Área temática:Alteraciones del lenguaje, Análisis del discurso, Lingüística de corpus, Lingüística románica, Otras especialidades, Pragmática, Semántica, Sintaxis, Sociolingüística, Técnicas de comunicación
Plazo de envío de propuestas: hasta el 31 de octubre de 2020
Notificación de contribuciones aceptadas:15 de noviembre de 2020

Fecha de publicación en Infoling:14 de septiembre de 2020
Renata Enghels
Universidad de Gante (Bélgica)