Multimodality's Terminological Jungle - And a Way Through

Wildfeuer, J. (Speaker)

    Activity: Talk and presentationAcademic event Academic


    Almost 30 years of interdisciplinary research on multimodality have
    brought about a very diverse terminology and a variety of concepts and definitions for key terms such as semiotic modes, texts and media. While all of them certainly have their raison d’être, the terminological jungle often leaves us with many open questions, especially when several disciplines meet and borrow from each other.
    In our textbook (Bateman et al. 2017/Wildfeuer et al. 2020), we therefore provide a more robust foundation for multimodality as an interdisciplinary and ideally empirical endeavour and give clear definitions for the most important concepts. In my talk, I will
    summarize some of these and particularly focus on the often problematic distinction between modes and media as well as between ‘multimodality and ‘multimediality’. With a critical look at and description of some examples from the conference programme, I hope to show the applicability and usefulness of this approach for a broad range of disciplines and research contexts and to clarify some misunderstandings and uncertainties.

    Bateman, John; Wildfeuer, Janina; Hiippala, Tuomo (2017): Multimodality. Foundations, Research, Analysis. A Problem-Oriented Introduction. Berlin, New York: de Gruyter.
    Wildfeuer, Janina; Bateman, John; Hiippala, Tuomo (2020): Multimodalität. Grundlagen, Forschung, Analysis. Eine problemorientierte Einführung. Berlin, New York: de Gruyter.
    Event titleMultimodal Artefact Analysis in Ancient Studies: Investigating intersemiotic relations in pictorial and verbal communication in ancient Egypt, the Near East and beyond
    Event typeConference
    LocationMunich, Germany


    • multimodality
    • ancient world