Voices, silences and silencing: creative arts and applied linguistics, applied linguistics and creative arts

Santiago Cathedral

On 6th June 2019, the AILA Creative Inquiry and Applied Linguistics Research Network convened a colloquium at the University of Santiago de Compostela as part of the IV symposium of the Asociación de Estudios sobre Discurso y Sociedad (EDiSo). The theme for this year’s symposium was ‘Voices, Silences and Silencing in Discourse Studies’ and the colloquium focused on research which uses arts-based or arts-informed approaches.

The panel had three papers, including research into identity in Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon (Pamela Murgia), participatory arts with young people in South Africa (Lou Harvey) and the Global StoryBridges project which links young people from across the world using digital story-telling (Maggie Hawkins, Julia Llompart, Emilee Moore and Claudia Vallejo). A summary of the papers and the discussion by Jessica Bradley can be found here.

A call for papers for the Creative Inquiry colloquium of the AILA Congress 2020 will be circulated shortly.

Multilingual digital storytelling – event at Goldsmiths on 7 June 2019

Information about a multilingual digital storytelling conference and festival at Goldsmiths in June. Event is co-led by Vicky Macleroy in the Centre for Language, Culture and Learning.

This is the link to the Eventbrite:


Multilingual digital storytelling, museum artefacts and the arts: Creative pathways to language-and-culture learning


Conference Friday 7 June 2019 (09:00 – 14:30) Goldsmiths, University of London Department of Educational Studies Margaret MacMillan Building (Top Floor) Funded by the Language Acts and Worldmaking AHRC Project Dr Jim Anderson and Dr Vicky Macleroy Centre for Language, Culture and Learning Talks and workshops addressing three dimensions to the conference theme: experience, culture and identity; process and performance; agency and dialogic thinking.   Plenary: Making space for learning: Exploring affect in stop-frame-animation. Professor Gabriele Budach, Dimitri Efremov, Daniela Loghin and Gohar Sharoyan (University of Luxembourg) Entry to the conference is free with your Eventbrite ticket


New resources online: Creative Language Practices through a Translingual Lens

Creative Language Practices through a Translingual Lens: A Toolkit is a suite of creative ideas and activities that can be used in multilingual settings, ranging from language classrooms to community language-related projects. These resources have been developed by a team of researchers from the University of Glasgow, creative artists and teachers from the Glasgow area. The toolkit is available for free and the team is looking forward to hearing how its activities have been used in other contexts. For questions and collaborations, feel free to contact the team by visiting the project website at https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/gc/creativepracticestranslang/

AILA 2020 Groningen, 9-14 August 2020

AILA 2020 Groningen

As an AILA ReN we will have a symposium at next year’s AILA World Congress which will be in Groningen, NL. s. We shortly be circulating a call for papers but in the meantime, please email me if you are interested in participating (Jessica.bradley@sheffield.ac.uk).  

Creative Inquiry and Applied Linguistics: Researching communication with, into and through the arts

The arts have become an increasing focus of attention for applied linguists, with a rich diversity of approaches and models of working emerging. Creative inquiry can be defined as ‘any social research or human inquiry that adapts the tenets of the creative arts as a part of the methodology’ (Leavy, 2014: 1). However, there is a risk that creative inquiry is seen as method, and that its theoretical affordances and implications remain unmined.


This colloquium therefore considers what creative inquiry in applied linguistics is, how it has been used, and how it might extend our understandings of communication and language in relation to ‘real-world problems’ (cf. Brumfit 1995: 27). The papers present a range of research from different contexts, working with, into and through the arts in multiple ways. These projects – broad-ranging in scope, in place, in questions, and grounded in different forms of arts practice – enable us collectively to ask what the relationship is between communication and creative arts and, importantly, what the affordances of this might be for applied linguistics. The papers will therefore set out the scope of research engaging with creative inquiry in applied linguistics and discuss theoretical implications arising for the field.

AILA ReN / BAAL CUP seminar 10-11 July 2019, University of Leeds

We are really looking forward to our BAAL CUP-funded seminar which takes place on 10 and 11 July 2019. Thank you to all those who submitted papers – you have heard from us now about the arrangements. The programme and details of how to book are available from this link: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1s8xiuwywaguEpxZInpbZr6CHCOE6zzFa and there are still places available to attend.

Please contact Lou Harvey (l.t.harvey@leeds.ac.uk) if you have any questions.

Research seminar at University of Leeds ‘If we try we can fly’ by Sari Pöyhönen, University of Jyväskylä, 10 May 2019, 2pm – 4pm

Network member and visiting professor at the University of Leeds Sari Pöyhönen is talking about her research with unaccompanied minors in Finland which used photography to understand life trajectories and everyday experiences. The seminar, organised by the Centre for Language Education Research, is free to attend and booking is not required. The discussant is Lucy Taylor.

Please contact James Simpson (j.e.b.simpson@education.leeds.ac.uk) for further details.