I am Professor of English Sociolinguistics at the Department of Language and Literature, which I joined in August 2020. I hold a German postdoctoral degree ('Habilitation') in English and general linguistics from the University of Bonn and a PhD in general linguistics from the University of Cologne. In 2018/19 I was a Feodor Lynen fellow at the University of Cape Town (South Africa), sponsored by the Humboldt foundation, conducting research on language learning and use in tourist spaces in Zanzibar. I was subsequently awarded a research fellowship for investigating formal and informal language learning in this context by the Cluster of Excellence "Africa Multiple" in 2020/2021. With a return fellowship from the Humboldt foundation, I started analyzing the digital tourist space of Zanzibar and its interfaces with offline tourism discourse, a project which I continue working on today.
Organization of a panel at the European Conference on African Studies (31 May - 3 June 2023) with Tatjana Schnellinger & Dorothy P. Agyepong. Topic: Multimodality in the past, present and future: Entanglements between Africa and its diasporas (panel L05). Paper proposals can be submitted until 9 January 2023. I will also be a discussant for panel Anth23 Tourism and the future - Performances, expectations and resistance. The call for papers for that panel also closes on 9 January.
In spring 2023, my office hours will be on Mondays from 10.30-11.30. Please let me know via e-mail if you would like to make an appointment.
My research is sociolinguistic and applied in nature, informed by (linguistic) anthropology and constructivism. My linguistic foci are varieties of English and contact languages in Africa, as well as sign languages, most notably Irish Sign Language and alternate sign languages. After coming to Norway, I also started researching language use in the Nordics, especially in the Norwegian cruise tourism industry, and joined the editorial board of Scandinavian Studies in Language. My central research interests are multilingualism, language contact, multimodality, politeness and linguistic epistemology, as well as research methodologies.
Current research projects
At NTNU, I am part of the research groups "Semiotics of Communication in Interactive Languaging" (SOCIAL), "Navigating Languages in Professional Practices" (NaPP), and I was co-leader of "Narrative across Media" (until 2021). I started a forum for applied and sociolinguistics called "Open Landscapes" in 2020.
Besides this engagement at my home university, I am a member of several international networks, e.g. Global Englishes in ELT in Germany. Currently, I am participating in networks and groups on:
- social participation in linguistically diverse societies, i.e. Next Generation Literacies
- language practices in Africa, i.e. the collaborative research groups 'Africa in the Indian Ocean' and 'Africa in the World' as part of AEGIS
- linguistic diversity in Ireland, i.e. the Irish Deaf Research Network and the Irish English Research Network
- the language ideologies, beliefs and attitudes working group as part of the Language in the Human-Machine Era COST Network
I am actively involved in various interdisciplinary research projects with colleagues from Africa and Europe. This includes research on:
- language learning and linguistic repertoires in offline and online tourist spaces of the Nordics [with C. Ackermann-Boström, Umeå Universitet & O. Trøen, NTNU]
- politeness, specifically its prosody, in Irish Sign Language and Irish English [with K. Renkwitz & F. Sell, University of Bonn]
- hunting sign systems in Southern Africa, e.g. in Tjwao [with A.-M. Fehn, Universidade de Porto, A. Andrason, University of Cape Town & A. Phiri, Stellenbosch University]
- varieties of English in the ELT classroom in Germany and the Nordic countries [with S. Jansen, University of Greifswald & J. Forsberg, University of Stockholm]
Previous research/group memberships
New Englishes, New Methods network, mass and countability from a cross-linguistic perspective, esp. in Ghanaian languages [with D. P. Agyepong, University of Ghana]
Research stays and fieldwork
2022 - Fieldwork on linguistic landscapes in cruise tourism in Norway
2020, 2021 - Research stays (fellowships) at the Cluster of Excellence "Africa Multiple", Bayreuth Academy of Advanced African Studies
2019 - Research stay and data collection at the Centre for Deaf Studies, Trinity College Dublin
2017, 2018, 2019 - Fieldwork on English in tourism in Zanzibar (Tanzania)
2016 - Research stays and data collection at the Open University of Tanzania, University of Cape Town & University of Ghana
2013 - Voluntary work at the Kenya National Association of the Deaf
2012 - Fieldwork on hunting signs among the Ts'ixa and ||Ani-Khwe in Botswana
2010 - Research stay at the University of Toronto
2009 - Research stay and data collection at the Centre for Deaf Studies, Trinity College Dublin
I have published monographs, article collections and individual articles and book chapters on issues relating to my research in sociolinguistics, anthropological and applied linguistics. This includes, for instance, monographs on Nominal Pluralization and Countability in African Varieties of English in Routledge's Studies in World Englishes series in 2022, and Mouth Actions in Sign Languages - An Empirical Study of Irish Sign Language in De Gruyter's Sign Languages and Deaf Communities series in 2014. Together with Helene Steigertahl, I edited a special issue on "Urbanized African Sociolinguistics" in Sociolinguistic Studies in 2020, a special issue on "Communicative Action and Interaction in Africa" in the Journal of Pragmatics (with Klaus P. Schneider & Jemima A. Anderson) and an edited volume on Learning Languages, Being Social (with Lindsay Ferrara) as part of the Anthropological Linguistics Series at De Gruyter are under contract. You can find a full list of publications here.
Most recent publications (2022):
Investigating English in multilingual contexts online: Identity construction in geotagged Instagram data. Frontiers in Communication 6: 778050. doi: 10.3389/fcomm.2021.778050.
Gesture, sign languages and multimodality. In Svenja Völkel and Nico Nassenstein (eds.) Approaches to Language and Culture. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton, 159-196; with Anastasia Bauer.
Language ideologies in the English language classroom: suggestions for EIL informed teacher education. In Marcus Callies, Stefanie Hehner, Philipp Meer and Michael Westphal (eds.) Glocalising Teaching English as an International Language: New Perspectives for Teaching and Teacher Education in Germany. London & New York: Routledge, 63-81; with Sandra Jansen & Julia Forsberg.
Review of Storch, Anne and Angelika Mietzner (2021) The Impact of Tourism in East Africa: A Ruinous System. Bristol: Channel View. Journal of Postcolonial Linguistics 8: 25-30.
Language ideologies and media ideologies. In Britta Schneider and Bettina Migge (eds.) Changing Language Ideological Concepts in the Human-Machine Era. Questions, Themes and Topics. LITHME. doi: 1013140/RG.2.2.25867.36649; with Britta Schneider & Bettina Migge.
Teaching experience and foci
I have taught internationally in higher education, especially in Germany, South Africa and Norway. Topics included sociolinguistics (e.g. language attitudes, varieties of English), general linguistics (e.g. introduction to linguistics, phonology), applied linguistics (e.g. translation studies, methods in applied linguistics) and sign language linguistics (e.g. introduction to sign language linguistics, iconicity). At NTNU, I teach courses on (English) sociolinguistics on BA and MA level, and in the Take Credit programme for in-service teachers, such as Varieties of English (ENG1001), Global Englishes (ENG6026), Sociolinguistic Theory (SPRÅK3100) and independent study courses on sociolinguistic topics (SPRÅL3800).
Further, I am a member of the study programme council (studieprogramråd) for English.
I supervise MA and PhD candidates in my teaching areas, and relating to my research interests mentioned above. I also mentor postdoctoral researchers.
Completed MA projects at NTNU are:
Teichroeb, Emilie Anja (2022). Norwegian attitudes toward non-native English speakers and accents.
Ongoing PhD projects are:
Tatjana Schnellinger. Kiss-Teeth and Cut-Eye in impolite discourse contexts: Afro-Surinamese co-speech gestures and pragmatic markers in multilingual interactions [working title]. PhD in Language and Linguistics, NTNU.
Lionel Sango. The speech act of apology in urban Cameroon [working title]. External supervisor, PhD in English Linguistics, University of Heidelberg.
Mentoring of postdoctoral projects:
Billian Künstner-Otundo. Multilingual learning spaces: Translanguaging practices in the Kenyan classroom. English Linguistics, University of Bayreuth.
- Mohr, Susanne. (2020) #ResearchAcrossBorders (Wissenschaftler*innen des Jungen Kollegs der Nordrhein-Westfälischen Akademie der Wissenschaften und Künste). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9v5PcrDMXns&feature=youtu.be [Internett]. 2020-04-30.