Linguistic Disobedience

Restoring Power to Civic Language

Authors: Komska, Yuliya, Moyd, Michelle, Gramling, David

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  • Places language at the forefront of civic awareness
  • Provides a theoretical and practical resource for speaking up and inhabiting language in an age of manipulation, uncertainty, and outright lies
  • Highlights the role that marginalized communities have played in critically appraising and in caring for language in times of crisis
  • Argues that we need a new role for, and moral commitment to, the public critique, correction and care of language
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eBook $19.99
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  • ISBN 978-3-319-92010-8
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  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $27.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-319-92009-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book asks how we—as citizens, immigrants, activists, teachers—can counter the abuse of language in our midst. How can we take back the power of language from those who flaunt that power to silence or erase us and our fellows? In search of answers, Linguistic Disobedience recalls ages and situations that made critiquing, correcting, and caring for language essential for survival. From turn-of-the-twentieth-century Central Europe to the miseries of the Third Reich, from the Movement for Black Lives to the ongoing effort to decolonize African languages, the study and practice of linguistic disobedience have been crucial. But what are we to do today, when reactionary supremacists and authoritarians are screen-testing their own forms of so-called disobedience to quash oppositional social justice movements and their languages? Blending lyric essay with cultural criticism, historical analysis, and applied linguistics, Linguistic Disobedience offers suggestions for a hopeful pathway forward in violent times.

About the authors

Yuliya Komska is Associate Professor of German Studies at Dartmouth College, USA. She wrote The Icon Curtain: The Cold War’s Quiet Border (2015) and co-edited, with Irene Kacandes, Eastern Europe Unmapped: Beyond Borders and Peripheries (2017).
Michelle Moyd is Associate Professor of History at Indiana University Bloomington, USA. She is the author of Violent Intermediaries: African Soldiers, Conquest, and Everyday Colonialism in German East Africa (2014).
David Gramling is Associate Professor of German Studies and Second Language Acquisition & Teaching at the University of Arizona, USA. His book The Invention of Monolingualism (2016) received the American Association for Applied Linguistics book award for 2018.

Reviews

“There are too many words around to be able to say anything anymore. Censorship used to be the issue. Gagging. Now it's the spuming word geysers of social media, the non-stop jabber of reality show politicians (of which Trump is just the US example), who have occupied all language, so there is no more space for the self or for dissent. One way out is silence. Another is to reinvent how we use words, how we care for them, how we make them and them us. This short sharp book opens the conversation.” (Peter Pomerantsev, author of Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible)

“This is a correctly political Lingua Tertii Imperii for our age. In times when the war is the words the humanities bring super-vision, this book of obedient linguistic disobedience will give you a road map—no, not a road map, let’s not speak any more of road maps—it will give you a way, when there is no path, a tracery of steps taken through the mouthways of words. There will be an attentiveness awoken in your word-making tongue, as you read these disobediently obedient words, you will crave silence, as a political duty, a spiritual act.” (Alison Phipps, UNESCO Chair in Refugee Integration through Languages and the Arts, University of Glasgow, UK)

Table of contents (5 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $19.99
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-92010-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $27.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-319-92009-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Linguistic Disobedience
Book Subtitle
Restoring Power to Civic Language
Authors
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-92010-8
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-92010-8
Softcover ISBN
978-3-319-92009-2
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
IX, 175
Topics