Annual symposium of the scientific network "RéAL2"

Acquisition, teaching and promotion of “non-majoritarian” varieties

Università di Verona (Italy), 3-5 October 2024

With the patronage of the Franco-Italian University, the annual colloquium of the RéAL2 thematic network will be hosted by the University of Verona, in collaboration with the University of Bergamo and the IRN "Heritage Languages in Europe" (SFL, CNRS).


This year's theme is the acquisition and teaching of “non-majoritarian” varieties.
The European territory is the scene of widespread scenarios of multi- and plurilingualism, within which “majoritarian” languages (e.g. the official languages of a State, or major foreign languages) coexist with other “non-majoritarian” varieties. For the purposes of the colloquium, the latter may be divided into the following three categories:

  • varieties that are part of the cultural heritage of a community distinct from the dominant group, but have been present on the territory considered for a long time (e.g. Occitan in France).
  • heritage varieties, being part of the cultural heritage of a relatively recent immigrant community (e.g. Romanian in Italy).
  • varieties widely spoken elsewhere (including State official languages), but poorly represented as a foreign language on the territory considered (e.g. Polish in Italy, at least as a foreign language in higher education).

As plurilingualism and the valorisation of “non-majoritarian” varieties represent a sensitive issue in the European educational debate, the colloquium aims to compare a wide range of scientific and didactic experiences, carried out with similar objectives but based on varieties characterised by diverse sociolinguistic and political contexts. The reflection will focus on different aspects of the general theme, ranging from methodological and didactic evaluations, to empirical studies on the role of interlingual distance in the acquisition process, to language policy considerations.


The colloquium will pivot around eight invited lectures. Significant attention will be devoted to poster presentations.

Invited lectures

  • Ricardo Etxepare (CNRS), Why do grammars overlap? A view from Basque-Romance contact
  • Elena Soare (Université Paris 8), The acquisition of Differential Object Marking in Child Heritage Romanian
  • Jiyoung Choi (INALCO), The comprehension of negative wh-questions in L1 vs. Heritage vs. L2 Korean
  • Urszula Paprocka, Sebastian Piotrowski (KUL Lublin), Polish as a heritage language in the US
  • Stefan Rabanus, Sabrina Bertollo (Università di Verona), Citizen science initiatives for the documentation and promotion of minority languages in Northern Italy
  • Paolo della Putta (Università di Torino), Italo-romance dialects, regional and standard Italian in the linguistic repertoires of first-generation migrants in Italy
  • Isabella Matticchio (Sveučilište u Rijeci), Italian in Istria and Dalmatia
  • TBA


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