Last Minute info


Due to the unpredictable and constantly evolving situation for the Covid-19 pandemic, which has seen increases in the numbers of cases in many countries, as well as the rapidly changing regulations that are being put into effect by different governments around the world, we have decided to cancel the 2020 CNRS Summer School on Semantic Shift .

We have taken this decision after much deliberation and with much regret, given the impressive list of invited instructors and the rich array of courses organised.

Thanking you all for your understanding of the situation, we look forward to your participation at a future school  and wish you all a very safe summer.             


The Organizing Committee




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The dates are being maintained for the Summer School on "Semantic Shifts: From lexicon to grammar. Diachronic and typological perspectives" from 14th to 26th September 2020.

As your safety and well-being during the school are our absolute priority, the following sanitation and social distancing measures will be in place in the wake of the pandemic:

1. The main and only amphitheatre to be used for the daily classes has a capacity of 120 places for the 60 participants at the Summer School. This will allow for alternating seating (that is, one place occupied next to one place free).  (Recall that there will be no parallel sessions at the school.)

2. Participants will be accommodated in individual hotel rooms at the IGESA Center (unless you come with your partner or family of course).

3. The restaurant for all the mealtimes is sufficiently large to enable social distancing requirements to be fulfilled. There is additional seating at an outdoor terrace as well. 

4.  The number of crossings will be increased for the ferry from Hyères (La Tour Fondue) to the island of Porquerolles to respect the rules for the number of persons per square metre. 

Due to the corona virus, the pre-registration deadline has been postponed from 15th June, 2020 until the new date of Friday 31st July, 2020. This will allow time for the new deconfinement measures to be implemented in our respective countries and for the situation to become clearer for everyone concerning reservations for both international travel to France and domestic travel within France to the summer school venue in Porquerolles.

The confirmation of your registration will consequently begin on Monday 3rd August and continue until Friday 14th August 2020 during which period you will receive an email from the Organising Committee.

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The CNRS 2020 Summer School on “Semantic shifts from lexicon to grammar – diachronic and typological perspectives” will be held on the island of Porquerolles in the south of France from 14th to 25th September 2020.

The main objective of this Summer School is to explore the crossover between two different traditions of research in semantics  –  grammaticalization and  lexical semantics – from a range of perspectives such as language contact, areal linguistics, lexical typology and diachronic semantics, as well as corpus linguistics and computer-assisted methodologies. 

This interdisciplinary perspective will benefit from an integrative approach that has been designed for the groundbreaking French excellence clusters (Labex EFL, ASLAN, TRANSLITTERAE), many of whose associated researchers will be presenters at the School in addition to international scholars. To this end, three priority areas in linguistics are to be covered: (i) major semantic fields analysed in terms of lexical typology and diachronic change such as body part terms and associated motion constructions; (ii) areal linguistics with respect to the phenomena of semantic change, lexicalization and grammaticalization (Australian, Melanesian and Ethiopian linguistic areas, Amerindian languages,Creoles) and (iii) hands-on workshops to familiarize participants with the use of databases for reconstruction and typology. With the aid of sophisticated databases and the tools of corpus linguistics, semantic evolution can thus be examined in novel ways in quest of patterns of semantic change that may recur crosslinguistically.

Details and abstracts of the courses and their accompanying schedule can be found below under the rubric Programme, while information on registration and fees is given under the rubric Registration and about the means of transport to and from Porquerolles under Practical Information.

This year’s summer school has opted for a plenary format: Participants will be able to attend all twelve courses and workshops –no parallel sessions are scheduled. Note also that courses will be presented in English. Two afternoons have also been set aside for discussion between the participants who, apart from the presenters, will comprise master and doctoral students, postdoctoral researchers and scholars.


The Organizing Committee:

Hilary Chappell, Benjamin Fagard, Maria Koptjevskaja-Tamm, Martine Vanhove & Jeanne Zerner

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