Babel Newsletter 1.31.2017

Publications and websites

• Bruno Perreau’s new book came out on January 19, which he co-edited with historian Joan W. Scott: Les Défis de la République. Genre, Territoires, Citoyenneté (Presses de Sciences Po). The book shows that, beyond political discourses on change, the French republic is already being transformed by new public policies and concepts. As a point of departure, the book considers the career of Françoise Gaspard, who launched the idea of political parity in France, authored numerous reports on equality in European cities, and various constitutional reforms throughout the world (notably Rwanda and Tunisia), and ultimately served as an adviser to the United Nations. 

• Maria Khotimsky has co-edited (with Stephanie Sandler, Margarita Krimmel and Oleg Novikov) a volume of articles devoted to contemporary  Russian poet, scholar and philosopher Olga Sedakova. The collection entitled  Olga Sedakova. Stikhi, smysly, prochteniia. Sbornik nauchnykh statei (Olga Sedakova. Poems, Meanings, Interpretations. A Collection of Scholarly Articles) was issued by NLO Publisher in Moscow. An official book presentation took place during the Moscow Non-Fiction Book Fair on December 1, 2016. This collection features 14 essays by scholars based in Europe, Russia, and the United States, including Maria’s chapter devoted to Olga Sedakova’s work as a translator of poetry.

 Shigeru Miyagawa’s new book Agreement Beyond Phi will be published by MIT Press in March 2017. It will be in the Linguistic Inquiry Monograph series, considered the top monograph series in theoretical linguistics. This is his second monograph in this series. 

Lectures and Conference Presentations

• Bruno Perreau presented his most recent books this January at three events in Paris, Faire et défaire la théorie du genre, with Joan W. Scott, Centre Européen de Sociologie et Sciences Politique, Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne, Les Défis de la République, presentation with Joan W. Scott, bookstore Violette and Co, Queer Theory: the French Response, presentation at the Political Theory Research Seminar, Sciences Po Paris. He also organized an academic conference at Sciences Po on January 19 to present Les Défis de la République.

• Emma Teng presented a paper on migration and transculturation at the Asia Inside-out conference in Hanoi, January 8-13, 2017. In January, she also gave talks at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Helena May, and The Asia Society in Hong Kong.

• Haohsiang Liao gave three invited talks in Taiwan in January: “Chinese Language Pedagogy: Between Professionalism and Diversity” at National Central University, “W.H.O.M.: Ten Years of Pedagogy and Beyond” at National Taiwan Normal University, and “Easy Mandarin Chinese: It’s Pedagogy and Design” at Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages.

• Catherine Clark spoke at NYU’s Maison Française on January 30, as part of the event  “Futures of French: Remembering, Forgetting.” It was part of a series about the future(s) of the field, organized by the French Department.

• Takako Aikawa gave an invited talk in December, titled  “Toward the development of a Japanese AI Tutor” at Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan. On November 18, 2016, she presented “AI Tutor: A Preliminary Assessment Report”, at the AATJ (American Association of Teachers of Japanese)/ACTFL Conference, Boston, MA.

•  Bettina Stoetzer gave an invited talk on the paper “Use at your Own Risk: Ethnographic Modes of Precise Inattention,” and was part of the Panel Abduction! Captive Lines of Inquiry at the Anthropological Association Annual Meetings, Minneapolis, November 17. She gave an invited talk, “Ruderal Ecologies: Rethinking Nature, Migration, and the Urban Landscape in Berlin”, on November 14 at STS Circle, Program on Science, Technology and Society, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.

In the Media

• Emma Teng was interviewed by the South China Morning Post and appeared on the Morning Brew program of RTHK (Radio and Television, Hong Kong). She was also interviewed by the Asia Society, New York

• Bruno Perreau was interviewed with Joan W. Scott by the daily newspaper Libération (article to be published late January) and participated in several radio broadcasts (La Suite dans les Idées, Divers Aspects de la Pensée Contemporaine) while in Paris. He has also been featured in the MIT News.

Of Note

• Masami Ikeda-Lamm has received an ACTFL OPI Full Tester Certification in Japanese.

• Haohsiang Liao was granted the MIT Greater China Fund for Innovation. He will collaborate with the founder of MandarinX on their project titled “edX: Mandarin Chinese for Business.”

• Nilma Dominique participated in a roundtable on December 3 with other Portuguese Program coordinators from institutions in the area. The discussion focused on Teaching and Learning Portuguese as a Heritage Language. The event was the 1st Education Fair organized by the Brazilian Consulate in Boston.

• Dagmar Jaeger gave a workshop on January 7, on technology and innovation in Germany for high school students of German at the Melrose High School. The workshop was part of the Global Language Immersion Day involving students from Melrose and other high schools from the Boston area.  


 Emma Teng has curated, China Comes to “Tech”: 1877-1931/麻省理工学院早期中国留学生1877-1931 at the MIT Libraries’ Maihaugen Gallery. The exhibit opens February 10 and will run until November 30.

• Ian Condry is working with the MIT List Visual Arts Center on Art / Protest / Value, a book launch and panel discussion taking place on March 7 from 6 to 8 pm.

• Takako Aikawa organized a workshop for the Japanese language teachers o November 20, 2016, which was sponsored by the Japan Foundation, Los Angeles, and the AATJ.

• IAP has been a great time for many MIT students to practice a new language! This IAP, MIT’s Global Studies and Languages has partnered with the MIT Language Conversation Exchange to host a number of events, including a tremendously popular weekly lunch. During the past two lunches, more than 90 students have gathered to practice a new language, enjoy some lunch, and find a language partner! Upcoming IAP events include an “Intro to Russian” and “Intro to French” class and two more lunch mixers. The Language Conversation Exchange is a program organized by MIT Community Wellness that facilitates the formation of language partnerships. It provides the opportunity to practice a language with a native speaker, and in exchange, assist your partner in learning your native language. Everyone in the MIT community is welcome to join! For more information about the community, visit or

• The Korean Language Table held every Friday during IAP was a great success. It was named Korean “Ranguage” Table as students tried all kinds of  Korean ramens. Approximately 20 students joined every week and had a good time getting to know each other and sharing information about studying Korean and Korean culture. Students in 21G.901 enjoyed practicing Korean, having Korean snacks, watching Korean movies and shows, and listening to K-pop with their classmates.

• This year GSL offered two classes in Madrid during IAP • PHOTO GALLERY •