"Spaces of language – space in language"/"Spaces of literature - spaces in literature" - call for papers - Annales UMCS sec. FF

Krzysztof Kotuła's picture
Call for Papers
February 28, 2023
Subject Fields: 
Humanities, Languages, Linguistics

"Spaces of literature – spaces in literature"

We would like invite you to submit proposals for articles for the thematic issue "Spaces of literature – spaces in literature". The theme is related to the specific status of literary discourse, which is autonomous and at the same time inextricably linked to its own context. We want to look, firstly, at the modes of making space and spatiality present in literature, and secondly, at issues concerning the functioning of literature in culture of various periods and formations.

We are particularly interested in the relationship between literature and space – poetics and stylistic and genre specificity of geographical, travel, tourist and topographic descriptions that appear in literary and literary texts of various epochs, including the ideological and aesthetic determinants of such descriptions. We consider an interesting problem, worthy of constant discussion, the reflection of authors on the issues of relationship between culture, space and identity/subjectivity, especially due to the current vision of the Anthropocene as a sphere of humanistic reflection, including literary studies. As part of the proposed topic, we would also like to raise the issue of literature as a tool for the expression of spatial experiences, as well as the area that determines the processes of their conceptualization and definition. We are also interested in literary discourses as "laboratories" of geopoetics or new regionalism – we want to consider whether prose, poetic, essayistic, non-fictional texts are sometimes lined with quasi-theoretical reflections, and to what extent selected texts can verify the effectiveness of methodology and theories under the sign of topographic turn.

We would like to reflect on the issue of changes in literature – the ways in which it functions in today’s culture and functioned in past centuries. We want to look for answers to a few questions, such as: What is the space of literature today? How has it changed over time? How do local literatures create their fields in the context of world literature? We are interested in transformations within the understanding and definition of literature and literariness, the way of constituting literary institutions and entities related to literary life and the literary field, especially in the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries. We will be interested in sketches devoted to changes in writing tools, the emergence of new topics, problems, issues that have been overlooked, ignored, tabooed or simply occurred in recent years as a result of socio-civilizational development.


"Spaces of language – space in language"

All living beings face the challenge of navigating the world around them, and many of them use detailed cognitive maps. However, unlike other animals, humans have developed the ability to convey spatial information using natural language and graphical representations. The development of spatial language was very important in human evolution because it allowed individuals to transmit data about their surroundings to other individuals.

Space and its coding in natural languages is a key topic in the area of research on the relationship between language and cognition. Since the groundbreaking work of researchers such as Fillmore (1975), Talmy (1985), Lakoff (1987) and Langacker (1987), linguistic categories expressing spatial relations, both static and dynamic, have been subjected to detailed research in various languages.

These studies often seek to answer the question of how spatial categories are encoded in and expressed through a language, as well as what kind of limitations – both linguistic and cognitive – are characteristic of different languages throughout the world. In parallel, due to the close relationship between space and human life, the ways in which spatial concepts are encoded in language can shed some light on the way in which the structure of language is connected to the physical experience of space and human culture.

These issues can be treated as a starting point for the studies included in the volume. We are interested in a very wide spectrum of issues, such as reflection on the function of demonstrative pronouns in different languages, spatial metaphors, interactive research focusing on the use of deictic gestures, etc.


FILLMORE, CH. J. (1975), Santa Cruz Lectures on Deixis, Indiana University Linguistics Club, Bloomington.

LAKOFF, G. (1987), Women, fire and dangerous things. What categories reveal about the mind, University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

LANGACKER, R. W. (1987), Foundations of cognitive grammar. Vol. I: Theoretical Prerequisites, Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA.

TALMY, L. (1985), Lexicalization patterns: Semantic structure in lexical forms, in SHOPEN, T. (1985, ed.), Language typology and syntactic description. Vol. III: Grammatical categories and the lexicon, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 57-149.

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