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Utrecht Studies in Language and Communication

ISSN: 0927-7706.

The last two decades have shown a remarkable increase of research on communication and language use in specific social and cultural settings, ranging from broad and more or less heterogeneous communities to highly specialized professional organizations. This increase draws upon a manifestly growing cooperation between such diverse disciplines as text linguistics, discourse analysis, ethnography of communication, speech act theory, cognitive linguistics, educational linguistics, cognitive psychology and anthropology. Cooperative efforts from these approaches are essential in order to improve our understanding of: the functional quality of texts and text features in view of the specific goals and the addressees of professional and educational institutions, the relationship between discourse and context in specific and changing social and cultural settings, including multilingual and multicultural interactions, the cognitive basis of discourse processing in continuously changing contexts, and the skills underlying goal-directed language use in familiar as well as novel situations, the acquisition of such flexible linguistic capacities in educational settings. At the Utrecht Institute of Linguistics of the Rijksuniversiteit Utrecht in the Netherlands, an interdisciplinary approach is being pursued directed towards developing and integrating theoretical insights in language use in specific social and cultural contexts, and in the processes, both in first and second language learning, by which people acquire the ability for such language use. The aim of the Utrecht Studies in Language and Communication is to publish results of research in this area, as well as immediately related areas.

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