In this Dialogue & Debate webinar, we explore the complex politics behind language and terminology. We tackle questions about the control and regulation of language and consider the role of the Government, the media and minority groups in deciding what is deemed to be ‘Politically Correct’. We ask, ‘Politically Correct to whom?’
We highlight the powerful and even transformative role of language for creating inclusive and equal environments, where everyone feels valued.
This webinar is presented by our Programme Officer, Emily Gow, who has a linguistics background.
Our guest panellists include:
- Kiri Kankhwende - Freelance journalist and Trustee at Index on Censorship
- Dr Melani Schroeter - Associate Professor in Linguistics, University of Reading
- Andy Shaw - Co-founder, Comedy Unleashed
- Tony Thorne - Author, linguist and lexicographer
Key themes of discussion
The suggestion that ‘Political Correctness has gone mad’ is widespread. Using appropriate language or terminology is a complex art, as new words are coined and society progresses. For example:
- Is it acceptable to use the acronym ‘BAME’ to refer to people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities?
- Despite its pejorative use in recent times, has the term ‘queer’ now been reappropriated in a positive way?
- Racist and sexist jokes were often considered to be funny and acceptable to watch as family entertainment only a couple of decades ago, but how and why has our sense of humour changed?
- How carefully do comedians, media workers and public figures need to tread, in order to avoid causing offense through what they write or say?
This webinar examines how language can be used to include and exclude people, and how the fear of causing misunderstanding and offence might inhibit our freedom of expression. Our guest panellists will exchange views on the importance of our choice of language, in the workplace, politics, the media and within our communities.
How to join
You can join this webinar on Zoom, as a non-video participant, and interact with the panel via our live Q&A. Everyone is welcome and there is no charge.
Please register in advance using this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_lxyfeocHQ-mlpj1zMYZUiA
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with details of how to join the webinar live, and reminders.
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