Goldsmiths Linguistic Seminars (GoldLingS)

GoldLingS is a seminar series organised by the Linguistic section of the Department of English and Creative Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London. All GoldlingS seminars are online.

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Talks are given on various topics, from formal linguistics, sociolinguistics, applied linguistics and discourse analysis, by renowned academics, members of staff and post-graduate students. We also invite leaders from the industry to discuss their professional work and relation to English language study.

Autumn Term

Welcome to GoldLingS

20 October 12-1pm

Join us to find out about linguistics research in the Department and share your research ideas. 

With Alessia Cogo, Geri Popova, Pia Pichler

Animals vs Armies: Metaphors & Metaphor Resistance in Anti-Immigration Discourse

10 November 4-5pm

With speaker Christopher Hart (Lancaster University)

Book onto this event through the Goldsmiths Events Calendar.


Identity work and alignment in social media posts of autistic adults: a discourse-based multi-site ethnography

1 December 12-1pm

With speaker Nelya Koteyko (Queen Mary University)

Autism is now commonly conceptualized as a form of neurodivergence, that is “different, not less” (Fletcher-Watson and Happé, 2019: 23). The neurodiversity movement has brought about new ethical and theoretical debates within autism research and this presentation considers how approaches under the umbrella of digital discourse-based ethnography can have a proactive engagement with these debates.

Nelya will present some of the emerging results of their ongoing project and focus on the methodological advantages and pitfalls of analysing identity construction by adult autistic users of Twitter and Facebook. While a corpus-assisted analysis of user posts shows the predominance of self-advocate vocabulary and a positive reframing of autism as neurological difference (Bagatell, 2007), interviews and online observation allow us to document multiple and changing alignments with different professional and social groups.

Overall, their findings offer a complex picture of autistic adults and their use of social media, and show how practices driven by social media affordances —notably tagging, directed replies, and sharing multimodal content— can reveal identities and interactional processes that are largely invisible in clinical, speech-based research on autism. Such a picture expands appreciation for agency and communicative competencies of autistic people shown in discourse-based studies in face-to-face settings (e.g. Sterponi and de Kirby, 2015; Maciejewska 2020), while bringing attention to both facilitative and limiting role of the socio-technical environment. 

Bagatell, N (2007) Orchestrating voices: Autism, identity and the power of discourse. Disability & Society 22(4): 413–426.

Fletcher-Watson, S., Adams, J., Brook, K., Charman, T., Crane, L., Cusack, J., et al. (2019). Making the future together: shaping autism research through meaningful participation. Autism 23, 943–953.

Maciejewska E (2020) Autistic resources from a discourse-analytic perspective. Qualitative Psychology 7(3): 348-366.

Sterponi, L., and de Kirby, K. (2016). A multidimensional reappraisal of language in autism: insights from a discourse analytic study. J. Autism Dev. Disord. 46, 394–405

All GoldlingS events are free, please book your ticket with Eventbrite.

Past programme