The XI southeast asian linguistics society (SEALS) conference

วันที่จัด :

16 พ.ค. 2001

วันที่สิ้นสุด :

18 พ.ค. 2001

เจ้าภาพร่วม :

RILCA, Mahidol University

The Southeast Asian Linguistic Society (known by its acronym SEALS) convened its eleventh meeting from May 16 to 18, 2001 in Bangkok, Thailand. Participants gathered for their presentations and discussions at the Royal River Hotel which is scenically located on the banks of the Chao Praya River in the northwest corner of the city. The Research Institute for Language and Culture of Asia of Mahidol University at Salaya hosted this year’s conference. Prof. Somsonge Burusphat, Deputy Director of the Institute, chaired the Organizing Committee. In the morning of the first day Prof. Dr. Khunying Suriya Rattanakul, Director of the Institute, officially opened the conference in her welcoming speech.

About 150 participants registered for the conference and they came from more than 20 countries and territories that included Australia, Burma/Myanmar, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Vietnam.

All the major language families of the region were represented in the papers presented at the conference with discussions focused on the following individual languages (listed by language family or subbranch): Austroasiatic: Chong, Khmer, northern Khmer, Kmhmu Cwang, Kui, So, Suai, Vietnamese; Austronesian: Bonggi, Filipino, Hsiukuluan Amis, Inati, Indonesian, Jakarta Indonesian, Kelantanese Malay, Malay; Hmong-Mien: Green Hmong, White Hmong, Mien Yao, and Libo Yao; Indo-European: Singaporean English; Sinitic: Hong Kong Cantonese, Mandarin Chinese, Tae-Tsiw (Chaozhou) in Bangkok, and Taiwanese; Tai-Kadai: Ahom, Bouyei, Kam, Lanna Thai, Lao, Lue, northern Thai dialects, northern Zhuang, Phuthai, southern Thai dialects, standard Thai, and Tak Bai subdialects; Tibeto-Burman: Akha, Assamese, Bisu, Boro, Burmese, Daai Chin, Hyow, Karbi, Karen, Lahu, and Mizo.

A very wide range of linguistic topics were represented in the papers, and among the topics were the following: historical comparative and typological linguistics, historical language contact, historical migration of ethnolinguistic groups, ethnographic linguistics, address terms, discourse analysis, narrative analysis, conversational analysis, textual analysis, syntactic analysis, pronominal systems, sung poetry, baby names, ethnonyms, toponyms, idioms, swear words, pretended obscene riddles, secret languages, proverbs, orthographic systems, computerized mapping of the geographical distribution of languages and linguistic differences, dialect subgrouping, modern language contact, vernacular languages, language shift, endangered languages, language preservation, language teaching, corpus linguistics, child language acquisition, lexicon of ethno-pharmacology, word etymology, acoustic analysis of tone and stress, acoustic analysis of voice quality, contrastive analysis of tone systems and historical development of tone.

During the three mornings of the conference the following keynote speeches were presented: Typology, language contact and historical implications in Southeast Asian perspective by Jerold A. Edmondson; History and typology playing hide-and-seek in Austroasiatic by G?rard Diffloth; Nested operations as evidence for Thai layered clause structure by Anthony Diller; Discourse and cognitive resource for grammaticalization in Thai by Shoicihi Iwasaki; Research expedition in summer of 2000 Luce Grant for vocabulary of wet rice paddy cultivation (Meung-faai tradition) by Jerold A. Edmondson and Vinya Sysamouth; and Using GIS [Geographical Information System] for displaying an ethnolinguistic map of Thailand by Suwilai Premsrirat and Isara Choosri.

In the early evening of the first day of the conference a reception for participants was hosted by Prof. Dr. Khunying Suriya Rattanakul in the Krungthon Ballroom of the Royal River Hotel. Entertainment was provided by musicians from Mahidol University who performed on traditional Thai instruments and young dancers attired in traditional Thai dress. Martha Ratliff, who has been the major personality responsible for the existence of SEALS and has attended all SEALS meetings from its inception, reminisced about how the first SEALS meeting evolved from a conversation between herself and Eric Schiller back in 1990.

After all the papers had been delivered the summation of the three days of keynote speeches and papers from the parallel sessions was given by Robert S. Bauer of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Prof. Somsonge Burusphat formally closed the conference and announced the organizers and venues of the forthcoming twelfth and thirteenth SEALS meetings which will be held in the USA: Prof. John Hartmann will be organizing the conference in 2002 at Northern Illinois University at Dekalb; and in 2003 Prof. Shoichi Iwasaki will organize the meeting at the University of California at Los Angeles.

Reported by Robert S. BAUER
Department of Chinese and Bilingual Studies
Hong Kong Polytechnic University