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Conference "Learning from Africa: Equal opportunities for women in academia"

(28-29 October 2019)

In Africa, equality has found differing paths than in Germany, since women in academia seem to be well-represented even without female quotas. The conference seeks to discuss the applicability of strategies to facilitate the access and continuance of women in academia – in Germany as well as in Africa. It also seeks to create and support international networks.

Our expert speakers offer an encompassing view on the opportunities of female scientists in various stages of their careers. The focus is put on the discussion of their experiences and insights. The invited speakers are researchers from South Africa, Ghana and Nigeria, together with German experts in career planning and equal opportunities. The conference concludes with a public panel discussion in the town centre of Potsdam on which the findings are presented to a wider public.

In order to offer a relaxing atmosphere for continuing exchange among the conference participants, there will be a Cameroonian buffet (day 1), a conference dinner (day 2) and a boat trip (day 3).

The conference is a joint event of the Department of English and American Studies, Chair Development and Variation of the English Language(Prof. Hans-Georg Wolf & Anna Finzel, M.A.) and the Coordination Office for Equal Opportunitiesof Potsdam University.


SPEAKERS AND PANELISTS (in order of their appearance)


New Perspectives on Irish English 5

(25-27 April 2018)

Continuing the impetus of the first four installments of the conference series in Dublin (2010, 2013), Limerick (2015), and Bergen (2016), the fifth edition of New Perspectives on Irish English will be held in Potsdam from 25-27 April 2018.

The conference returns to the University of Potsdam, where four internationally acclaimed symposia on The Celtic Englishes were held between 1995 and 2004. It is a joint venture between the University of Potsdam and Bielefeld University and it intends to provide a forum for the presentation of current research on Irish English.

NPIE5 is being co-organised by Arne Peters (University of Potsdam) and Marion Schulte (Bielefeld University) and is fully funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft).



Wednesday | April 25 | 9-17 hrs | Campus Neues Palais | Building 8 | Room 0.58

  • 9.15-9.30 Conference opening

Irish English abroad

  • 9.30-10 Göran Wolf (Georg-August-Universität Göttingen): 'Irish English in the former GDR'
  • 10-10.30 Sandra Clarke (Memorial University, St. John's): 'Documenting the Irish English linguistic heritage in Newfoundland: New approaches'

Cognitive sociolinguistic approaches

  • 11-11.30 Nancy Avila (Universidad de Extremadura): '“I know you have not forgot home yet”: Investigating the conceptualization of emotions through mental verbs in Irish emigrants’ epistolary discourse'
  • 11.30-12 Marije Van Hattum (The University of Manchester) & Arne Peters (Universität Potsdam): 'Cultural conceptualisations of threat in c19th Irish English threatening notices'


  • 13-13.30 Markku Filppula (University of Eastern Finland): 'Tracing an ongoing change in Irish English syntax: the were-subjunctive and the use of would in the subordinate clause'
  • 13.30-14 Kevin McCafferty (Universitetet i Bergen): ‘"[T]his is the only spare Coppy I have got": Stative possessive HAVE in eighteenth- to twentieth-century Ireland'
  • 14-14.30 Rosemary Shannon & Bettina Migge (University College Dublin): 'Exploring the NFC as a linguistic resource for research on Irish-English syntax'

Fictional texts as data

  • 15-15.30 Liam Mac Mathúna (University College Dublin): 'The genesis and import of the form of Irish English employed by Douglas Hyde in his translations from the Irish in Love Songs of Connacht (1893)'
  • 15.30-16 Elaine Vaughan (University of Limerick): Locating Limerick: 'The representation of ‘Limerick English’ in the graphic novel, Savage Town'
  • 16-16.30 Ana María Terrazas (Universidad de Extremadura): 'Reproducing Dublin English orality in fiction: The use of intensifying such and total(ly) in the Ross O’Carroll-Kelly series'


Thursday | April 26 | 9-15 hrs | Campus Neues Palais | Building 8 | Room 0.58

Pragmatics of Irish English

Session 1: Overview & Historical

  • 9.30-10 Raymond Hickey (Universität Duisburg-Essen): 'Historical Sociolinguistics and Pragmatics of Irish English'
  • 10-10.30 Carolina Amador-Moreno (Universidad de Extremadura): '"The poor natives of this misfortunate country are being led astray more & more every day": the use of deictics in the Corpus of Irish English Correspondence'

Session 2: Classic Pragmatics

  • 11-11.30 Patricia Ronan (Universität Dortmund): 'Multimodal approaches to directives in SPICE Ireland'
  • 11.30-12 Anne Barron (Leuphana Universität Lüneburg): 'Apologies in Irish English'

Session 3: Phonology

  • 13-13.30 Marion Schulte (Universität Bielefeld): 'Sociophonetic aspects of discourse markers in Irish English'
  • 13.30-14 John M. Kirk (Universität Wien): 'The Pragmatics of Intonation: Fall-rise tones in the SPICE-Ireland Corpus'

Session 4: New Developments

  • 14.30-15 Patricia Ronan (Universität Dortmund): 'Hashtag, obesity much?'


Friday | April 27 | 9-15 hrs | Campus Neues Palais | Building 8 | Room 0.58

Phonological aspects

  • 9-9.30 Warren Maguire (University of Edinburgh): 'The origins of epenthesis in liquid+sonorant clusters in Mid-Ulster English'
  • 9.30-10 Nicola Bessell (University of Cork): 'Voices of Ireland: Developing a protocol for a continuing audio database of Irish English'

Sociolinguistic aspects

  • 10.30-11 Karen Corrigan (Newcastle University): '“If You Talk English, It’s Really Easy”: Passing as Northern Irish To Win Friends and Influence People'
  • 11-11.30 Fergus O’Dwyer (University College Dublin): 'Male humour in a Dublin sports club'
  • 12.30-13 Joan O’Sullivan (Mary Immaculate College Limerick): ‘"Wiling us with their overseas charms": authenticity, identity and ‘othering’ in Irish radio advertising'
  • 13-13.30 Brian Clancy (Mary Immaculate College Limerick) & Paul O’Brien (University of Limerick): '"You’ll have the time of your life swanking at Rosses Point": Exploring linguistic identity in personal letters from early to midtwentieth century Ireland'
  • 13.30-14 Martin Schweinberger (Universität Hamburg): 'The Sociolinguistics of Emotional Language - Emotive Use in Irish English'
  • 14-15 Conclusions



Workshop series on 'Multimodality in Linguistic Research'

(31 May & 6 June 2017)

 Wednesday | May 31 | 10-17 hrs | Campus Neues Palais | Building 9 | Room 1.15

  • Mark Turner (Case Western Reserve University, USA): 'Voice, gesture, action: Tools for the modern study of human multimodal communication'
  • John Bateman (University of Bremen, Germany): 'The analysis of multimodality: Semiotic foundations and consequences for methodology'
  • Chiao-I Tseng (University of Bremen, Germany): 'Narrativised space and genre space: A new approach to multimodal communication and transmedial comparison'

Further information about the talks on May 31st can be found [here]


Tuesday | June 6 | 11-18 hrs | Campus Neues Palais | Building 11 | Room 2.19

  • Claudia Gianelli (University of Potsdam, Germany): '“I grasp what you give”: Neurophysiological evidence on the interplay between action language and perspective taking'
  • Eve Sweetser (UC Berkeley, USA): Gesture, conditional constructions, TV data, and multiple deictic viewpoints'
  • Maira Avelar (UESB, Brazil): 'On deixis: a verbo-gestural analysis'

Further information about the talks on June 6th can be found [here]


The workshop series is organised by Milene Mendes de Oliveira and Anna Magdalena Finzel and generously funded by PoGS, FNK, and the Chair of Development and Variation of the English Language.

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