Research in Modern Languages

In our Department we foster an interconnected vision of Modern Languages.

In Modern Languages research at Birmingham, we explore how the study of languages, discourses, and cultures challenges how we understand and experience the world. Our key concerns involve asking how foreign languages, discourses, and cultures – as objects and methods in their own right, and in all their multiplicity – relativize our ways of thinking, and how an awareness of this enables us to identify links and interconnections where there appears to be only difference and otherness.

The exploration of these questions involves challenging and blurring boundaries, forming and transforming knowledges, interrogating identities, and engaging in multiple kinds of translation. Our researchers draw on and contribute to debates from a multitude of disciplines including neuroscience, cognitive science, psychology and psychiatry, sexuality and gender studies, philosophy, aesthetics, literature, politics, history, and the visual arts. Our investigations span Europe, South America, the Caribbean, Africa, China, the Middle East, and languages of the Caucasus.

Interconnectedness is thus central to the method and the ethos that unites the research we carry out, in particular via interlingual, intermedial, and interdisciplinary work which is international in both its object and reach. We make connections between knowledge forms and disciplines that urgently need to be placed in dialogue with each other, beyond the limitations of traditional partnerships and conversations.

Our current projects:

Our researchers are engaged on a range of research projects:

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