MEITS Blog


The myth of English as the language of science?

by Dieuwerke (Dee) Rutgers

In this day and age, it is hard to imagine the world of science without English: The dominance of English as the lingua franca of the international scientific community is generally undisputed, even if the impacts of this dominance are more contested. My aim here is not to make a claim to the contrary: English is indeed the preferred language of scientific communications today. Still, I wonder – might there be more to the ‘language of science’ than meets the proverbial eye? How ‘English’ is our scientific language anyway, and what does this reveal about the history of science? Might our bias towards science published in English be leading to lost knowledge and missed opportunities? What are the less visible and less tangible parts of our scientific endeavours, and what roles do languages play within this?

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Stories of Multilingualism

by Dieuwerke (Dee) Rutgers

Naturally, the question of what it means to be multilingual is one I receive frequently in my work as a researcher on the MEITS project. In the simplest terms, being multilingual can perhaps be defined as ‘being able to speak or use more than one language’.

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