skip to content

Discourse Studies

graphic slider element

  • Discourse Studies presentation at Open Campus

    Prof. Anna Bonifazi, Giulia Sperduti, Juman Al-quaoud, Pinelopi Ioannidou and Madeleine Pikowsky present at Open Campus.

  • Die Teilnahme an der transdisziplinären Tagung am 16.-17.11 2023 ist kostenfrei. Eine Anmeldung ist erforderlich.

Discourse studies at IfL explores pragmatic, cognitive, and semiotic aspects of large linguistic units. “Discourse” is taken as the domain of language use (in Du Bois’ terms) and as a process rather than a product (in Widdowson’s terms). Research and teaching interests encompass the interface between syntax and pragmatics; discourse structure above the sentence level; the conceptual mapping, blending, and compression behind figurative language; the relation between texts and socio-cultural contexts in contemporary as well as in historical texts (communication strategies, text production and text performance); and the theoretical underpinnings of multi- and cross-modal features in oral genres. Past and current synchronic and diachronic approaches apply contemporary frameworks to linguistic phenomena in ancient Greek corpora; further corpora are being progressively added. The starting team looks forward to increasing collaborations with the other sections of IfL, as well as with other Institutes, within and beyond the University of Cologne.


New! Check out the new MA profile module “Discourse Studies” here! 



Are you interested in transcriptions of conversation? Here we have a brief tutorial by a PhD student of our Department of Linguistics about the 2022-launched software DOTE!



+++Restricted library service: The current safety regulations must be considered! All information on the use of the library+++

  • Lunch & Linguistics in winter term 2023/24

    On October 18, 2023, the CCLS Lunch & Linguistics lecture series will start, where young researchers (from advanced Master and PhD students to post-docs) can present and discuss their research projects and network with researchers from different fields of linguistics. You are very welcome to participate!

  • CCLS Lecture Series in winter term 2023/24

    The lecture series of the Cologne Center of Language Sciences (CCLS) starts on October 16, 2023. This semester there will again be many interesting lectures on different research fields of linguistics. Here you can find the program of the CCLS Lecture Series in the winter term 2023/24 as well as further information.

  • Cologne research group deciphers enigmatic script from antiquity

    Much of what is known today about the Kushan Empire and its inhabitants comes from Chinese, Greek or Roman sources. Until now, no one has been able to read some of the written testimonies of this Central Asian culture, because the writing system in which they were written had not been deciphered. The Cologne linguists Svenja Bonmann, Jakob Halfmann and Natalie Korobzow have now made a breakthrough: the riddle of the unknown Kushana script has been solved.

  • Maria Bardají i Farré as guest of Radio Republik Indonesia Tolitoli

    At an interactive dialogue titled "TANTANGAN DAN UPAYA PELESTARIAN BAHASA DAERAH" (Challenges and efforts for the preservation of regional languages), Maria Bardají i Farré spoke about the Western Austronesian language Totoli on July 26, 2023.  

  • The German Research Foundation (DFG) has granted Professor Nikolaus P. Himmelmann, General Linguistics, a Reinhart Koselleck Project

    Entitled "Taking Spoken Language Seriously / Gesprochene Sprache ernst nehmen," the project will address the question of the relevance of spoken language properties for grammatical analysis over a period of five years. The funding amount is one million euros. Reinhart Kosseleck projects are awarded exclusively to researchers whose curriculum vitae is distinguished by outstanding scientific achievements. Funding is provided for particularly innovative and, in a positive sense, risk-taking research.

  • The Acquisition Sketch Project

    The Acquisition Sketch Project is an initiative aimed at expanding knowledge about the acquisition of little-studied languages. Combining findings from child language acquisition and language documentation, the project provides a detailed description of how to collect data and write an "acquisition sketch" of a language based on just 5 hours of naturalistic data.

  • Indogermanische Gesellschaft: Prizes for the best theses

    Since 2011, the Indo-European Society has awarded annual prizes for the best final theses in Indo-European studies worldwide. For the year 2022, Svenja Bonmann won 2nd place with her dissertation Parametric Syntactic Reconstruction. Noun Phrases in Iranian, Proto-Indo-Iranian and Proto-Indo-European (Supervision: Eugen Hill, Daniel Kölligan & Agnes Korn). Leo Rennert's master's thesis Die pronominalen Endungen der germanischen Adjektivflexion: Althochdeutsch (Supervision: Eugen Hill) received 3rd place. We congratulate both of them very much!

  • Wilhelm von Humboldt Award to Maria Bardají

    During this year's annual conference, Maria Bardají i Farré was awarded the Wilhelm von Humboldt Award for Young Academics of the German Linguistic Society. This is the most important award for young linguists in the German-speaking world. Congratulations!

  • Prof. Himmelmann as guest on the podcast Theory Neutral

    In the January 08, 2023 episode, Prof. Himmelmann talks about discursive demonstrative functions and his article "Demonstratives in Narrative Discourse: A Taxonomy of Universal Uses" (1996).