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Special Collection

Digital Modern Languages Section Launch Issue

Collection launched: 17 Dec 2021

While Pitman and Taylor (2017) highlighted the theoretical and methodological potential of research at the intersection between modern languages and the digital humanities, it has struggled to establish itself as a core area of research in either discipline. Recognising the need to “bring together and raise the visibility of Modern Languages research which engages with digital culture, media and technologies”, Spence and Wells launched the Digital Modern Languages seminar series in 2019, with this Section of MLO established to create a more unified space for the publication of such research.

We are now seeing a growing awareness across modern languages of the transformative potential of digital media and technologies in relation to research and teaching, while the digital humanities are increasingly conscious of the need to further incorporate multilingual and transcultural perspectives on their theories, methods and objects of study. The Digital Modern Languages launch issue traces these developments from multiple disciplinary, geocultural and linguistic perspectives. It challenges the dominance of Anglophone approaches to digital research, demonstrates the breadth of theoretical and practical approaches adopted in research at the intersection of languages and the digital, and proposes a counter-model to the current fragmentation in digitally mediated languages-focused research.

Guest editors: Paul Spence , Naomi Wells