Irene Eleta

Irene Eleta

College of Information Studies, University of Maryland
MITH Conference Room
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
12:30 pm

Social media is international: users from hundreds of different cultures and language backgrounds are generating and sharing content. As a result, language and national borders emerge in the communication landscape online. What can we do to make those borders more porous? Expatriates, migrants, minorities, diasporic communities, and language learners play an important role in forming transnational networks, by creating social ties across nations and communities. A closer look to their connections and interactions online might illuminate us in many ways, i.e. how to increase intercultural awareness, information diffusion across language borders, and promote international relations, outreach or activism at a global scale. Focusing on the personal social network of multilingual Twitter users, I will discuss how social network analysis unveils the intersections of language groups. In general, the use of social network analysis to discover patterns of intercultural connections constitutes an enriching approach that can be applied in many disciplines. Also, I will talk about the influence of the social network on the language choices of multilingual users, with particular attention to the use of English as a Lingua Franca. Finally, I will invite the audience to reflect on what prevents or encourages translation behaviors and cross-cultural awareness in the social media context.

A continuously updated schedule of talks is also available on the Digital Dialogues webpage.

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All talks free and open to the public. Attendees are welcome to bring their own lunches.

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