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The Body of Language: Names, Forms and Limits of the Representation of an Idea

Nadia Cannata    Sapienza Università di Roma, Italia    



The article discusses the complex issues involved in accounting for the birth and historical development of modern languages in Europe, and of their varieties and perceived identities. It offers a review of relevant approaches to this field of language studies and discusses the crucial role played by historical sociolinguistics, in particular when combined with studies in the history of written culture. The author argues in favour of a research approach aimed at reconstructing the ‘linguistic culture’ of communities in time and space, rather than focusing on the history of individual languages. In conclusion, the author illustrates EUROTALES. A Museum Laboratory of the Voices of Europe, a collaborative project aimed at the representation of languages as a dynamic and shared heritage.

Dec. 5, 2022
Nov. 3, 2022
Sept. 12, 2022

Keywords: Historical linguisticsMedieval philologyRomance languagesHistorical sociolinguisticsWritten cultureMuseums and language

Copyright: © 2022 Nadia Cannata. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.