How do language barriers come about?

As we prepare for the “Bridging Language Barriers” Symposium to be hosted at Macquarie University next week on March 16, we take a step back and ask how language barriers arise in contemporary societies.

“How does human language interact with increasing social complexity in a unified global network?”

This is not only a question that is fundamental to understanding language barriers but it is also the big question addressed by Ingrid Piller in a video segment that is part of Macquarie University’s new Coursera Specialisation Solving Complex Problems.

Solving Complex Problems synthesizes knowledge across the sciences and the humanities, and thereby provides a powerful foundation to think and research in new ways. The specialization consists of four individual courses and the segment on “Linguistic Complexity” is part of the introductory course devoted to “Analysing Complexity”.

Focusing on linguistic complexity in contemporary Australia, Ingrid explains key tensions in linguistic diversity against the social background of migration and globalization.

Migration and globalization contribute to making our societies more linguistically complex and that often means raising language barriers. Next week we will explore how such language barriers can be bridged in the “Bridging Language Barriers” Symposium. Registration for the symposium has now closed but if you cannot attend in person, you can still join the conversation with our team of live-tweeters on the day. Our Twitter hashtag will be #LOTM2017.

A transcript of the video is available here. For further videos, transcripts and a host of related resources, visit the Solving Complex Problems site over at Coursera.

Author Lg_on_the_move

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  • ALEXANDRA GREY

    Looking forward to hearing what social complexity means to our attendees this Thursday at Bridging Language Barriers Symposium, and how they’re solving issues of linguistic complexity and exclusion. Plus our IT Team are working to solve all ‘complex problems’ with conference technology before the day so Language On The Move’s global network can tell us about their solutions, from afar, without barriers 😉