CFP: TOPOI - Special Issue: Language and Worldviews: Ideas on Language Throughout the Ages

Submission deadline: December 1, 2020


Call For Papers

TOPOI - Special Issue: Language and Worldviews: Ideas on Language Throughout the Ages

Guest Editors:

Nathalie Gontier (1), Marta Facoetti (1), and Diana Couto (2) 

(1) Applied Evolutionary Epistemology Lab, Centre for Philosophy of Science, Department for History and Philosophy of Science, Faculty of Science, University of Lisbon, Portugal; (2) LOGOS/BIAP – Barcelona Institute of Analytic Philosophy, University of Barcelona, Spain & MLAG/Institute of Philosophy, University of Porto, Portugal


Language is a favourite topic of intellectual thought. Over the ages, language has been understood as a medium capacitating knowledge or belief; a mental faculty facilitating cognizing and reasoning; a behavioural capacity enabling communication and social interaction; a sociocultural means to identify and differentiate between groups and individuals; or an instrumental tool that permits objective scientific analysis. With this issue we aim to better delineate the intellectual genealogy of how language has been perceived and studied differentially within philosophical, religious, linguistic, and socio-anthropological schools of thought. In line with the spirit of Topoi, we want to open up a respectful dialogue on how views on language relate and differ from one another.

Our issue can already count on contributions on the following topics:

  • Language in ancient philosophies (logos theories);
  • Language in Judeo-Christian traditions (the search for an Adamic language);
  • Language in the Renaissance and Enlightenment (the search for the original Mother tongue);
  • Language in analytical traditions (the reference problem, indeterminacy of translation);
  • Language use in the evolutionary sciences (discourse analysis);

In addition to these topics, we are calling for papers on the following themes:

  • Language in non-Western Philosophies and World Religions;
  • Origins and rationale of Logic as an area of research;
  • Language and the Universalia debates;
  • Origins, divergence, and rationale of Cognitive, Bio-, Socio- and Anthropological Linguistics
  • Signs and codes as defined in (Bio)Semiotics and their relation to concepts of information, communication and language;
  • Any other topic deemed to shed light on the relationship between language and worldviews;

By comparing these traditions, our goal is to contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of how ideas on language are formed, how they underlie worldview formation or the Zeitgeist of an era, and how they change over time. Such research is important because it enables a better understanding of the reach and limits of existing schools of thought and it contributes to knowledge on the overall role that language plays in human symbolic evolution.

Instructions for Authors

  • Pre-enquiries by April 15th, 2020: Potential contributors are encouraged to send pre-inquiries and extended abstracts of 2 pages containing the contact details and full affiliations of all authors to the guest-editors by April 15th at nlgontier(@); mtfacoetti(@); dpcouto(@) When sending your email, remove the brackets around the @ inserted here to avoid spam. 
  • Paper submissions by December 1st, 2020: Authors are asked to prepare their manuscript according to the journal’s standard guidelines available at, and to upload their manuscripts by December 1st, 2020 on Topoi’s Online Manuscript Submission System (Editorial Manager), accessible at

When uploading your paper, be sure to select the “S.I.: Language and worldviews (Gontier/Facoetti/Couto)” in the drop down menu of “Article Type”.

All papers will undergo standard review procedures and when accepted they will be made available as online firsts until final publication which is estimated to occur in 2022.

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