05 Jan

The Premise
Most of the world’s conflicts since the end of the Second World War have been internal, often involving groups seeking independence, autonomy, or the defence of their rights. Language demands are frequently at the fore in many of these conflicts.
While language differences in themselves are not a cause of conflict, this conference proposes to explore whether the denial of language rights such as discrimination on the ground of language and the exclusion or disadvantage caused by State authorities through language preferences create rallying causes and lead to violent conflict. It will further explore how States have addressed these demands in a reasonable and proportionate way to ensure the successful social inclusion of minorities and indigenous peoples through the recognition of language rights which tackle the underlying socio-economic disadvantages that can flare around inappropriate language preferences.

The Conference and its Organisation
The Thirteenth International Conference on Law and Language of the International Academy of Linguistic Law is a collaborative effort involving researchers from the Faculties of Law and Mass Communications at Chiang Mai University (Thailand), the International Observatory of Language Rights in Moncton (Canada), and UNESCOCAT in Barcelona (Spain). This conference is part of a series of biannual events organised through the International Academy of Linguistic Law since 1984 when it was founded as an international multidisciplinary organisation bringing together jurists, linguists, social scientists and all those worldwide interested in world linguistic diversity, as well as the relationship between law and language.
The General Scientific Committee of the Conference is formed by Professors Fernand de Varennes, Kanya Hirunwattanapong, and Witoon Sinsirichaveng, as well as by Professors Claudine Brohy, Denise Daoust, Angéline Martel, André Braën, Joseph-G. Turi and José Woehrling (IALL-Scientific Committee).
The total price for participants in the conference will be $500 (Canadian dollars – CAD) for registration before 30 April 2012 and $600 CAD after this date. The price includes luxury accommodation for 4 nights, meals except a few evening meals, and the conference registration fee. Transportation from and to Chiang Mai airport is also included. Participants wishing accommodation for their partners or family members who are not registered for the conference will have to pay an extra charge. The price for students and participants from Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America will be $350 CAD until 30 April, or $400 after this date. For Thai students and participants not requiring accommodation, the registration fee will be $70.
The working languages of the conference will be French, English and Thai.

Conference Themes and First Call for Papers
Proposals for papers must be sent to Dr Fernand de Varennes, the Conference Convenor, at, with copy to the International Academy on Language and Law at by 1 March 2012 and include the following information:
1. Paper title
2. Name and contact information of author(s) (email, phone and affiliation)
3. A short biographical note (approximately 50 words)
4. Abstract of the proposed paper (200-300 words)
The conference will be divided in blocs addressing language rights, social inclusion and ethnic conflicts. Though not limited to language conflict situations in Asia, presentations which deal specifically with this theme will be especially welcome. Selected papers will fall within one or more of the conference themes in order to be included in the official programme.
Theme 1: Language and Conflicts in Asia. This theme will focus in 2012 on the language dimensions of conflicts in Tibet, Xinjiang, Southern Thailand, and Sri Lanka, though not exclusively.
Theme 2: Language and Conflicts around the World
Theme 3: The Relationship between State Language Preferences and Causes of Violent Conflict
Theme 4: Language Diversity, Liberalism and Democracy
Theme 5: Language Rights and Autonomy as Conflict Prevention
Theme 6: Social Inclusion and Language Rights
Papers may be submitted in French, English or Thai.


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