Parallel Session of Designated Topic 5: Historical and Comparative Linguistics


July 21-26, 2008

Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea

A parallel session on historical and comparative linguistics will be held at the 18th International Congress of Linguists (CIL 18). For more information, visit the website ( ) or contact the organizer at [email protected].

Organizer: Brian D. Joseph (Ohio State University, USA)


Historical and comparative linguistics - treating the study of both language change and language history, and examining the ways languages change over time and the methods linguists use to analyze and recover those changes - has long been a critical part of the overall study of language as a human phenomenon, arguably being at the forefront of the development of linguistics as a science in the 19th century and into the 20th and now the 21st centuries. Besides more traditional philologically based investigations, historical and comparative linguistics has benefited from the insights of variationist sociolinguistics, studies of language acquisition and language processing, and research into language contact. Looming over all of this as well is the realization that attitudes and ideologies about language (e.g. involving purism and prescriptivism) can have an impact on change.

Submissions are invited for twenty-minute talks (15 minutes for presentation plus 5 minutes for questions), in either English or French, on any topic relating to the study of language change and the explication of language history, viewed in their social context, in their psychological dimensions, and in their physiological and ideological aspect. Of particular interest is research that aims to go beyond the mere solution of a problem in the history of a particular language and expands our understanding of the nature of language change more generally, how it originates, how it spreads, how it can be analyzed most effectively, how it can be predicted, and other related questions.


Important Dates:


August  31, 2007: Deadline for submitting the abstract.

November 30, 2007: Notification of acceptance.


Form and submission of abstracts:


An abstract(.pdf or .doc file) should be up to 3 pages long, including data and references.

The abstract should start with the title of the paper, followed by the text of the abstract.

Please do not include the author's name in the abstract. On a separate page, please give

the author's name, affiliation, e-mail address, telephone number, mailing address, the paper title and the session number(title).


Please send the abstract and the author's information to both [email protected] and [email protected].