Call for papers: I-LanD Journal – Identity, Language and Diversity. International Peer-Reviewed Journal 2/2020

I-LanD Journal – Identity, Language and Diversity

International Peer-Reviewed Journal

Call for papers for the special issue (2/2020)

Hybrid Dialogues: Transcending Binary Thinking and Moving Away from Societal Polarizations

This special issue of the I-LanD Journal will focus on hybrid dialogues in various communities of practice across time and space. It will be edited by Cornelia Ilie (Strömstad Academy, Sweden) and Sole Alba Zollo (University of Napoli Federico II, Italy).

Submission of abstracts

Authors wishing to contribute to this issue are invited to send an extended abstract of their proposed article ranging between 600 and 1.000 words (excluding references) in MS Word format to the two editors by the 18th October 2020. Proposals should not contain the authors name and academic/professional affiliation and should be accompanied by an email including such personal information and sent to: and Please put as subject line “I-LanD Special Issue 2/2020– abstract submission”, and include the Journal e-mail address – – by using the Cc option.

In order to meet editorial processes, the most important dates to remember are as follows:

Submission of abstracts: October 18, 2020

Notification of acceptance/rejection: November 8, 2020
Submission of chapters: February 14, 2021


Following the successful and fruitful 5th ESTIDIA conference, held on 19-21 September 2019 at the University of Napoli L’Orientale, the theme of this Special Issue was prompted by the risks and challenges posed by the increasing use of virulent polemics both on- and off-line that are constantly shifting the boundaries between traditionally dichotomous forms of communication (e.g., public/private, face-to-face/virtual, formal/informal, polite/impolite) and types of mindsets (e.g., trust/distrust, liberal/illiberal, rational/emotional, biased/unbiased).

Binary or dichotomous thinking is responsible for producing and/or maintaining historically unsustainable hierarchies and inequitable power relations. While cyberspace communication environments can trigger and stimulate creative and productive dialogues that can be integrated with face-to-face dialogues, we are still witnessing a growing

proliferation of dichotomy-based misperceptions and misrepresentations of world phenomena and societal events (Beaufort 2018), which involve the mismanagement and manipulation of interpersonal relations and institutional power networks, leading to an environment of apprehension, suspicion and insecurity, strongly amplified and aggravated in recent times by anti-social discourse and behavior, extremist movements, and hate speech.

As a counterbalance of dichotomy-based beliefs and ways of thinking, new and hybrid forms of dialogue are needed to cross the frontiers of established dichotomies, questioning the legitimacy of increasingly conflictual, aggressive and divisive encounters (Sunstein 2007; Mason 2015) conducted both offline (in public meetings, TV debates, political and parliamentary debates, etc.) and online (on social media, such as Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat).

A wide range of analytical tools pertaining to multi-disciplinary frameworks of analysis can effectively contribute to identifying and critically examining dichotomy-based conceptualisation strategies that undermine existing democratic norms and practices, giving rise to polarized, confrontational and downright violent off- and on-line discourses. The questions researchers are called upon to consider, analyse and debate include, but are not limited to, the following:

• What types of polarized dialogue are to be found in various communities of practice (e.g. business, politics, education, health sector)?

• Has the increasing use of social media had a noticeable impact on the proliferation of the use of aggressive language and person-targeted attacks?

• What cross-cultural parallels can be noticed with regard to dichotomy-based polarization patterns in off-line and online dialogues? Is it possible to identify differences in terms of age, gender, education, to name but a few?

• What dichotomy-based forms of reasoning and arguing are more likely to be found in spoken, written or hybrid types of discourses, respectively?

• How are the audience’s emotions targeted, as well as manipulated, by the use of fallacious dichotomies in online and offline dialogue?

• How have radicalised, polarized, confrontational and downright violent discourses of extreme political movements given rise to institutional confrontations and the use of violence in both face-to-face and online interactions?

• To what extent is gender an impactful element in adversarial discursive behaviour? Are women and men equally inclined to initiate confrontational types of dialogue? How similar and/or how different are women and men when reacting/responding to aggressive language?

• What types of argumentation and contra-argumentation strategies are particularly prevalent in female and male professionals/leaders when engaging in adversarial debate?

• How can new, hybrid dialogues help to address the polarization which reinforces the current social and political crises in a vicious circle of multiplying conceptual dichotomies, deceptive binary thinking and fearmongering slogans or ‘shockvertising’?

Researchers are warmly welcome to propose contributions from diverse fields of enquiry, including linguistics, media studies, journalism, cultural studies, psychology, rhetoric, political science, sociology, pedagogy, philosophy and anthropology.

More about I-LanD Journal

Editors in chief:

Giuditta Caliendo (University of Lille) and M. Cristina Nisco (University of Naples Parthenope)

Advisory board:

Giuseppe Balirano (University of Naples L’Orientale)

Marina Bondi (University of Modena and Reggio Emilia)

Delia Chiaro (University of Bologna)

David Katan (University of Salento)

Don Kulick (Uppsala University)

Tommaso Milani (University of Gothenburg)

Oriana Palusci (University of Naples L’Orientale)

Paul Sambre (KU Leuven)

Srikant Sarangi (Aalborg University)

Christina Schäffner (Professor Emerita at Aston University)

Vivien Schmidt (Boston University)

Stef Slembrouck (Gent University)

Marina Terkourafi (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Girolamo Tessuto (Seconda Università di Napoli)

Johann Unger (Lancaster University)

The I-LanD Journal (

titolo=i-land-journal&parLingua=ENG) reflects a commitment to publishing original and high quality research papers addressing issues of identity, language and diversity from new critical and theoretical perspectives. All submissions are double-blind peer-reviewed. In fulfillment of its mission, the I-LanD Journal provides an outlet for publication to international practitioners, with a view to disseminating and enhancing scholarly studies on the relation between language and ethnic/cultural identity, language and sexual identity/gender, as well as on forms of language variation derived from instances of contamination/hybridization of different genres, discursive practices and text types.


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