While its roots lie firmly in linguistic pragmatics. the influence of relevance theory has spread (and continues to spread) to a number of disciplines, some of which might be considered as existing beyond its original domain. As well as work in cognitive science – relevance theory was, after all, originally conceived as a model of communication and cognition– there is now a huge relevance-theoretic literature in psychology, evolutionary psychology and the emergent domain of experimental pragmatics; in anthropology, cross-cultural studies and the social sciences; in disciplines as diverse as affective science, internet-mediated discourse and clinical pragmatics.
Here at the University of Brighton we are proud of our work pushing back the boundaries of relevance theoretic research. At present, postgraduate researchers at Brighton apply relevance theoretic insights to a range of diverse topics: the neuro-aesthetics of literature and artwork, second language pedagogy, the communication strategies adopted by those with cognitive difference and a relevance-drive ethnography of mathematics.
Relevance-by-the-Sea is a one-day, roundtable symposium, featuring a maximum of fifteen participants (including Deirdre Wilson, the co-founder of relevance theory), the aim of which is to explore new ways in which the boundaries of work in relevance theory might be extended.
University of Brighton
to be announced