The Paradox of Genres in Discourse 2020

- Online -

8 - 12 June 2020

Venue: Lorentz Center@Online

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The physical workshop has been rescheduled to 5 – 9 July 2021

Discourse genres are important in our everyday life. Being able to function in society requires having a sufficiently large repertoire of genres at your disposal: one should know how to perform in a job interview, how to fill out a tax form, how to read news or governmental information. In an era in which new technologies are introduced at great speed, new genres develop on the fly. This makes genre studies an interesting and dynamic field. Interestingly, however, our scientific knowledge about genre is limited. A first cause is the fact that research on genre faces a number of empirical problems, one crucial issue being that assumed conventional genre models are not always unambiguously reflected in ‘real life’ genre texts and events. Texts assumedly belonging to a given genre may vary with respect to the language that is used, the context in which it is used, and the goals that one wants to achieve. Our lack of understanding seems to be additionally caused by the fact that genre is a complex and multifaceted concept, comprising linguistic, pragmatic, and content-related knowledge with psychological, social and communicative aspects. The concept of genre thus crosses traditional theoretical and disciplinary borders. So far, genres have typically been studied from various mono-disciplinary perspectives, preventing science to formulate a comprehensive model of genre. This workshop brings together researchers from different disciplines in social sciences and humanities to further our understanding of the notion of genre, to explore the nature of and limits to variation in genres, to explore the possibilities of state-of-the-art methodologies that can help us understand genre variation and its limits, to discuss how genre knowledge is crucial in educational contexts and in journalism, and to lay the bricks for at least one potentially successful grant application.


    Monday 8 June (16:00 - 18:15 CEST)


    Session 1 from 16:00 till 17:15 Chairs: Ninke Stukker and co-chair Danielle McNamara 

    Session 2 from 17:25 till 18:15 Chairs: Danielle McNamara and co-chair Ninke Stukker 


    16:0016:15 Welcome and intruction by Lorentz Center and organizers

    Opening Talk 1. The intricacies of discourse genres: a dynamic hence elusive notion? by Wilbert Spooren from Radboud University Nijmegen

    16:3016:45 Discussion time

    Opening talk 2. 'Genre': rough (but useful) labels or functional category? An exploratoy mapping of requirements by John A. Bateman From Bremen University

    17:0017:15 Discussion time
    17:1517:25 Break

    Exploring students' knowledge of genre by Kathryn Soo McCarthy from Georgia State University

    17:3217:40 Discussion time

    Imitation and emulation in genre pedagogy by Kees de Glopper from University of Groningen

    17:4717:55 Discussion time

    The Role of genre in the comprehension and production of complex discourse by Laura Allen from University of New Hamsphire

    18:0218:10 Discussion time
    18:1018:15 Closing

    Tuesday 9 June (16:00 - 18:00 CEST)


    Session 1 from 16:00 till 16:50 Chairs: John Bateman and co-chair Wilbert Spooren

    Session 2 from 17:00 till 18:00 Chairs: Wilbert Spooren and co-chair John Bateman


    16:0016:05 Introduction

    Stylistic differences in literary genres by Karina van Dalen-Oskam from Huygens ING/University of Amsterdam

    16:1216:20 Discussion time

    Genre topography on the Web scale by Serge Sharoff from University of Leeds

    16:2716:35 Discussion time

    The dynamics of genre: In search of a model by Carla Vergaro from University of Perugia

    16:4216:50 Discussion time
    16:5017:00 Break

    Genre in journalism (studies) by Marcel Broersma from University of Groningen

    17:0717:15 Discussion time

    UGenre as an attended-to resource by Kerstin Fischer from University of Southern Denmark

    17:2217:30 Discussion time

    Genres as persuasive elements in serious games by Valentijn Visch from Delft University of Technology

    17:3717:45 Discussion time
    17:4517:50 Closing

    Wednesday 10 June (16:00 - 18:00 CEST)


    Session 1 from 16:00 till 17:05 Chairs: John Bateman and co-chair Wilbert Spooren

    Session 2 from 17:15 till 18:00 Chairs: Ninke Stukker and co-chair John Bateman


    16:0016:05 Introduction

    Genre as instructions for reader processing by Paul van den Broek from Leiden University

    16:1216:20 Discussion time

    Genre-based expectations and discourse coherence. The case of subjectivity in causal relations by Ted Sanders & Marian Marchal from Utrecht University

    16:2716:35 Discussion time

    The Linguistic operation of genre: a construals and constraints approach by Ninke Stukker from University of Groningen

    16:4216:50 Discussion time

    Genre and genericity by Henk Pander Maat from Utrecht University

    16:5717:05 Discussion time
    17:0517:15 Break

    Closing talk. Genres on genre by Danielle S. McNamara from Arizona State University

    17:3017:45 Discussion time

    Closing: Wrap up and outlook to the 'real' workshop july 5 - 9 July 2021

    Thursday 11 June

    No program

    00:0000:00 No workshop

    Friday 12 June

    No program

    00:0000:00 No workshop
    Please login to view the participants information. You have received the log in details in your registration confirmation.

    Ninke Stukker, University of Groningen  

    John Bateman, University of Bremen  

    Danielle McNamara, Arizona State University  

    Wilbert Spooren, Radboud University Nijmegen  

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