Next Centre for Transnational Studies seminar on Wednesday 6th March: Who defines what it means to be “disabled” in China today?

TNSThe next Centre for Transnational Studies seminar will be held on Wednesday 6th March from 4-5pm in room 1177 at Avenue Campus (Building 65) in collaboration with the Confucius Institute. The seminar is entitled “Who defines what it means to be ‘disabled’ in China today?” and will be presented by Dr Sarah Dauncey from the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Nottingham. All staff and students are welcome!

Here is the abstract for the seminar:
In this talk, Sarah Dauncey looks at the construction of disabled identities specifically from the perspective of Chinese cultural epistemologies. Drawing on sociological theories of citizenship, her research reveals how traditionally accepted notions of personhood are often fundamentally challenged through encounters and interactions with understandings of disability and impairment. She provides engaging examples of the ways in which representations and narratives of disability negotiate the identity of their subject(s) in relation to dominant discourses, where collective social, political and cultural understandings of what it means to live a ‘productive’ disabled life are both imbued and contested. Her findings offer new evidence as to the importance of intersectional accounts of disabled citizenship in revealing the complex and shifting power relationships between disabled individuals and/or groups and the state in any particular country or specific cultural context.

More information on Dr Dauncey can be found on her profile page.

Italian film showing on Monday 25th February – A Special Day – Una Giornata Particolare

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring A Special day – Una Giornata Particolare (Ettore Scola, 1977).

Join us on Monday 25th February in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. “A Special Day” takes place on the day of Hitler’s 1938 state visit to Rome, where he was given a gigantic, hysterically enthusiastic reception by Mussolini, the King, the diplomatic corps. After packing off her six children and her husband (all properly uniformed) to attend the rally, Antonietta sets about to clean her cramped apartment when Rosamunda, the mynah bird, escapes and flies to the other side of the courtyard of the now-empty apartment block. This is the device that brings Antonietta and Gabriele together… A Special Day stars Sofia Loren (Antonietta) and Marcello Mastroianni (Gabriele).

There is also a critique of the film by Louis Bayman.

All welcome, free entry!

SIGLTA meeting on Thursday 28th February: Setting a CEFR cut score on test instruments

SIGLTAYou are cordially invited to attend the Special Interest Group in Language Testing and Assessment (SIGLTA) meeting. SIGLTA is a postgraduate student-led reading/research group within the Faculty of Arts and Humanities.

The meeting is at 17:00-18:30 on Thursday 28/02/2019 in room 1095, Avenue Campus (building 65).

Abstract: Standard setting is a decision-making process of setting a cut score – a certain point on a test scale used for classifying test takers into at least two different categories (e.g. pass or fail). The standard setting process usually entails recruiting a group of panellists to complete a variety of tasks in order to recommend a cut score on a certain test instrument. In this presentation, I will discuss what constitutes good practice in setting CEFR standards for language examinations. The most common standard setting methods will be covered as well as their associated challenges.

The speaker: Dr Charalambos (Harry) Kollias received his Ph.D. degree from Lancaster University. He works as an Assessment Research and Analysis Manager at Oxford University Press. He has over 30 years’ experience in the education sector in roles ranging from teacher, teacher trainer to assessor trainer and (co)author of examination materials. With over 18 years’ experience in the assessment field, his areas of specialism include measurement analysis (pre- and post-test analysis), test material development, alignment studies, (virtual) standard setting workshops, and research studies. He has presented at several international conferences and facilitated the 12th Annual EALTA pre-conference workshop with Sauli Takala entitled “Standard setting – how to implement good practice”. His main interests are Rasch measurement theory, (virtual) standard setting, language assessment and validation, and artificial intelligence.

If you require any further information please send an email to na1y17@soton.ac.uk or lmb2g15@soton.ac.uk or see the SIGLTA Facebook page.

Next Centre for Transnational Studies seminar on Wednesday 20th February: Mental Health under Communism

TNSThe next Centre for Transnational Studies seminar will be held on Wednesday 20th Febuary from 4-5pm in room 1177 at Avenue Campus (Building 65) in collaboration with the Centre for Medical and Health Humanities. The seminar is entitled “Mental Health under Communism: Transnational Connections across the Iron Curtain and within the Eastern Bloc.” All staff and students are welcome!

Here is the abstract for the seminar:
Historians have traditionally assumed that the psy-disciplines behind the Iron Curtain, when they were not being abused for political purposes, were dominated by a topdown ‘Pavlovisation’, whereby Moscow bound scientists within the restrictive orthodoxy of theories derived from the celebrated Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov. In this paper I demonstrate that researchers were far from isolated from international developments – whether in the broader Soviet sphere, China, or the ‘West’ – and appropriated a broad range of theoretical models, including some which the Party had officially banned. Antipsychotic drugs were adopted from the West and mass-produced by state-owned firms. Psychoanalysis survived underground, coming into plain sight as theories of the unconscious influenced the world’s longest-running, state-sponsored LSD psychotherapy project in Prague between 1954 and1974. New models of mind from cybernetics, human ecology and infant attachment theory re-shaped research, treatment and even state-level policy. By tracing these transnational connections this paper challenges narratives of overwhelming state control. It traces the strategies that individuals used to further their professional and personal interests, both underground and in plain sight, and the examples of psychiatrists who engaged – whether explicitly or reluctantly – in the project of building socialism as a result.

More information on Dr Marks can be found on her profile page.

Next CLLEAR seminar: Aspirations of youth, English for future life plans in a school in Catalonia

CLLEARThe next Centre for Linguistics, Language Education and Acquisition Research (CLLEAR) seminar will take place on Wednesday 13th February 2019 at 4pm in Lecture Theatre C, Avenue Campus (Building 65). The talk is entitled “Aspirations of youth, English for future life plans in a school in Catalonia” and will be delivered by Adriana Patino-Santos from Modern Languages and Linguistics at the University of Southampton. All welcome!

Here is the abstract for this seminar:
The implementation of English as the language of instruction to teach content, usually referred to as Content and Language Integrated Language (CLIL) programmes, is changing the lives of teachers and students alike in Spain, as they deal with a set of issues related to new forms of teaching content though their second and, in the case of Catalonia, third language. Complementing my previous research on the portrayal of liberal selves among CLIL teachers in Catalonia (Codó & Patiño-Santos 2018), this presentation explores the narratives of secondary school students who attend these programmes. Through ‘life project stories’ (du Bois-Reymond 1998) and contrasted with ethnographic information, I aim to give an account of the ways in which a group of youngsters navigate social relations and imagine future plans under the new circumstances imposed by language policies that aim to neoliberalise the Catalan education system (Martinez & Albaiges Blasi 2013). ‘Generation’, even though a debatable concept within the sociology of youth (Furlong 2013), will be brought into the discussion to show how the ways in which young people engage with English in their daily lives signal an important ongoing generational shift in Spain, product of a set of recent traumatic collective events.

Italian film showing this evening (Monday 11th February) – The Conformist – Il Conformista

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring The Conformist – Il Conformista (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1970).

Join us on Monday 11th February, in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. Bernardo Bertolucci’s expressionist masterpiece is a movie that plugs post-war Italian cinema firmly and directly into the emerging 1970s renaissance in Hollywood film-making. The film is an account of the neuroses and self-loathing of a sexually confused would-be fascist (Jean-Louis Trintignant) aching to fit in in 1938 Rome, who is despatched to Paris to murder his former, anti-fascist college professor. Bertolucci combines a flawless aesthetic with a deep emphasis on composition, design, and camerawork to slowly build a devastating portrait of the kind of personality that allows fascism to flourish. The Conformist is less about drama and more about exploring the brutal truth of its antihero — and how he represents the drives that fuel fascism.

There is also a critique of the film by Corin Depper.

All welcome, free entry!

CGE Research Seminar on Wednesday 6th February: Ecological perspectives on researching multilingually: foregrounding and problematising language in an era of English-dominated scholarship

CGEThe next Centre for Global Englishes (CGE) seminar will take place on Wednesday 5th February 2019 from 5:00pm in Lecture Theatre C (room 1175), Building 65, Avenue Campus. The seminar will be presented by Richard Fay from the Manchester Institute of Education at the University of Manchester and is entitled “Ecological perspectives on researching multilingually: foregrounding and problematising language in an era of English-dominated scholarship”. All welcome!

Here is the abstract for this seminar:
In this talk, with reference to a series of AHRC-funded research projects, and mindful of the Anglo-centric pressures within much global academic publishing, I will explore the area of research practice we term Researching Multilingually (RM-ly) and present an ecologically-framed analysis of researcher praxis vis-à-vis RM-ly. I will present these inter-related research projects and, in doing so, explore how the understanding of RM-ly has shifted over the years. In particular, there has been a move from:
a) foregrounding languages in research – exploring researcher thinking and practice regarding the use of multiple languages in research (in an institutional and global context of English-dominated research); to
b) problematising the languaging of research – exploring researcher praxis regarding their languaging of research.
By the end, I will raise a number of proposals relating to researcher education, research governance, and epistemic justice.