Center for the Study of Communication and Society


Upcoming Events

May 10-11, 2024 – The 25th Annual Michicagoan Conference: MARGINS AND MERGENCE (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor)

Ongoing Events

Semiotics Workshop – The Semiotics Workshop is an on-going interdisciplinary workshop series based around intensive discussion of pre-circulated papers by students and faculty with the aims of advancing student and faculty research within a semiotic and linguistic anthropological framework.

Language Variation and Change Workshop – The Language Variation and Change Workshop is an on-going workshop focused on discussion of graduate and faculty work in sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, and linguistic anthropology.

Linguistic Anthropology Laboratory – The Linguistic Anthropology Laboratory hosts courses (the Linguistic Anthropology Practicum), data sessions, tutorials, and talks related to the close analysis of multi-modal discourse data of various sorts, in addition to providing space and resources (hardware, software) for students and faculty to engage in data analysis, transcription, and the like.

Michicagoan Graduate Student Conference and Faculty Seminar – Begun in 1999, the Michicagoan brings together the linguistic anthropology and sociolinguistic communities of the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago, as well as colleagues from neighboring institutions, through an annual graduate student conference (bi-annually held in Chicago and Ann Arbor on alternating years) and faculty seminar.

Metasemiotics Club – an informal reading group begun in 2020 that reads and discusses works in semiotic theory, with a focus on American Pragmatism.

Past Events

  • April 26–27, 2024 – Signification, Circulation, Emanations conference (Franke Institute of the Humanities, University of Chicago). 
  • Talking Politics 2023 (Spring 2023), Online. Event details here.
  • 24th annual Michicagoan Graduate Student Conference (May 12–13, 2023; Classics 110), University of Chicago. Theme: “Space, Place, and Landscape.” Keynote speaker, Steven Feld, “The Acoustemological Triangle,” 4pm on Friday, May 12, 2023.
  • “Perspective: Vision, Discourse, Ideology” seminar series and workshop, organized by Constantine V. Nakassis and James Costa (Sorbonne Nouvelle).
    • Lecture Series
      • Friday June 2, 2023 (9am Chicago, 4pm Paris), Lecture by Susan Gal (University of Chicago), “Erasures of Perspective: How the ‘Voice from Nowhere’ Gains Linguistic Authority.” 
      • Friday, June 9, 2023 (9am Chicago, 10am Toronto, 4pm Paris): Lecture by James Costa (Sorbonne Nouvelle), ““From Dangerous to Endangered — A Mere Question of Perspective? Endangering Dangerous Highlanders in Walter Scott’s Waverley.”
    • Workshop, June 19–21, 2023, Paris Center (University of Chicago), participants: Quentin Boitel, Cécile Canut, J. Costa, Maria Guilia Dondero, S. Gal, Isabelle Leglise, Bertrand Masquerlier, Urmila Nair, C. Nakassis, Kamala Russell, Jack Sidnell.
  • “Ideologies of Design: Metapragmatics, Mediation, Materiality” (September 20–23, 2022, University of Chicago), organized by Jürgen Spitzmüller and Constantine V. Nakassis; participants: Terra Edwards, Susan Gal, Jonas Hassemer, Taylor Lowe, Carina Lozo, Keith Murphy, C. Nakassis, Kamala Russell, J. Spitzmüller, Anna Weichselbraun, Eitan Wilf
  • 19th annual South Asian Graduate Student Conference: Popular Aesthetics in South Asia (March 3–4, 2022, online), Keynote speaker: Kajri Jain (University of Toronto), “Image as Process, Image as Assemblage,” March 3 at 9am CST.
  • Dalit Studies and the Study of Caste: State of the Field conference (April 14–16, 2022, Chicago, IL)
  • 23rd annual Michicagoan Graduate Student Conference: (Dis)Engagement in Ann Arbor, MI (May 6–8, 2022). Keynote speaker: Michel de Graff (MIT).
  • Chicago Tamil Forum: Social Meaning and Pragmatics in Tamil Discourse (May 12–14, 2022, Chicago, IL). Keynote speaker: Suresh Canagarajah (Pennsylvania State University), May 14th at 5pm CST
  • Panel Discussion on Bernard Bate’s Protestant Textuality and the Tamil Modern. October 15, 2021 CST (on Zoom: recording available here; open-access copy of Protestant Textuality and the Tamil Modern available here). Discussion of the editors of the book (E. Annamalai, Francis Cody, and Constantine V. Nakassis) with Susan Gal (moderator). Sponsored by CSCS, COSAS, Seminary Co-Op.
  • Taking Stock of Where We Are (Going) from What We Teach: A Workshop on Linguistic Anthropological Horizons and Pedagogy. 21 May 2021. A one-day on-line workshop with Sonia Das (New York University), Erin Debenport (University of California – Los Angeles), Terra Edwards (St. Louis University), Susan Gal (University of Chicago), Nicholas Harkness (Harvard University), Keith Murphy (University of California – Irvine), Constantine V. Nakassis (University of Chicago), Jack Sidnell (University of Toronto).
  • Talking Politics (Fall 2020) – the Talking Politics workshop series brings together scholars of the language of political communication together to discuss and analyze discourse-based data from the 2020 Presidential campaigns. It is held in conjunction between CSCS and CLASP (University of Boulder, CO) and organized by Wee Yang Soh (UChicago, Anthropology) and Velda Khoo (UColorado – Boulder, Linguistics). Watch videos of the events here.
  • The Center for the Study of Communication and Society, Latin American Studies, and the Department of Anthropology present John B. Haviland, Department of Anthropology, University of California, San Diego. “Icepicks and amulets: Mexican Merolicos’ Magical Marketing”. Friday, October 6, 2006, Noon in Kelly Hall 114 (Seminar Room). Icepicks and Amulets abstract, Haviland
  • The Center for the Study of Communication and Society presented a “Meet the Mediator” lunchtime talk by Jaroslaw Anders (Voice of America), Voicing America: U.S. Government Broadcasting in Search of a Mission. Friday, 27 January 2006, 12 Noon – 2.00 PM, South Asia Lounge, Foster Hall 103. Jaroslaw Anders has worked in U.S. broadcasting for over 20 years as a Polish language broadcaster, English programs reporter, radio and TV producer, Eurasia Division writer and news analyst. A native of Poland, he has contributed to a number of American periodicals, including The New Republic, The New York Review of Books, and Newsday. He is currently finishing a book on contemporary Polish literature.
  • “Lunchtime seminar with Professor Jan Blommaert (University of London; Ghent University) and friends:” Friday, 13 January 2006, 12 Noon – 2.00 PM, South Asia Lounge, Foster Hall 103 Sponsored by: Center for the Study of Communication and Society; Department of Linguistics; and Department of Anthropology.Jan Blommaert and Michael Silverstein will discuss the first installments of their joint project on the theory and history of fieldwork-based, inductive study of languages and language-mediated cultural forms, in an informal lunchtime seminar — sandwiches, etc. to be provided — around the seminar table in the South Asia Lounge.  Blommaert has recently written, From fieldnotes to grammar: Artefactual ideologies and the textual production of languages in Africa, and Silverstein, Inductivism and the Emergence of Modern Descriptive Linguistics, two papers that lay out some of the issues in their respective areas of study. The papers will form the basis for a short introductory conversation between the two authors, followed by a general open discussion of the papers and the issues they raise.