Call: “The Construction of the Robot in Language and Culture” issue of Technology and Language

Call for Contributions

The Construction of the Robot in Language and Culture
Theme issue of Technology and Language

Submission deadline: January 10, 2022

The second issue of Technology and Language has just appeared – and with it a new call for contributions. Individual papers and the whole issue are freely available at “In the Beginning was the Word: The Word as a Technical Artefact”  features contributions from Irina Belyaeva, Chandrima Christiansen, Christopher Coenen and Alexandra Kazakova, Thomas Froy, Tatiana Kazarina, Ulrike Ramming, Walker Trimble, Viktoria Vorotnikova and Sergey Karlin, and Joseph Wilson.

New Call for Contributions: The Construction of the Robot in Language and Culture, guest editor: CHENG Lin (deadline: January 10, 2022)

The word “robot” is a Czech invention. As the word traveled to English speaking areas and from there to other languages and cultures, did the robot on this journey become something else? Names and their etymology inform the technological imagination and thus provide a cultural framework for robotics research and development. Where did “robot” catch on and how does it relate to other concepts of an automaton that imitates humans, such as android, cyborg, or Maschinenmensch? When in the 1980s, it was found that the Chinese translation of “robot” was not appropriate, this raises a question of right and wrong, of understanding and misunderstanding robots. For robots and AI, more generally, we want to explore how they are imagined, defined, described, comprehended, constructed or even misunderstood before and after they become a technological reality – how they are constituted in language, how cosmopolitan or intercultural they are. We are hoping for contributions from linguistics, philosophy, cultural and gender studies, history of technology, STS, and literature.

Technology and Language invites interdisciplinary explorations at the interface of technology and language – contributed papers in English or Russian are welcome at any time.

Other calls:

Technology and the Media Environment of the Information Society (Deadline: June 21st, 2021):

Social networks and communication systems, new modes of reading and writing, the hybridization of symbolic codes stand for the disruptive effects of digital and cyber-technologies on practices of communication and expression not only in the internet but also in traditional media.

We invite contributions to interdisciplinary investigations of human and social prospects, the past and future of language, in this technological condition. Possible topics include 1) nudging, disinformation, and technologies for the manipulation of behavior and consciousness in digital environments, 2) the digital language of intelligent environments, 3) information technologies in social engineering environments and technocracies, 4) cognitive technology and sociolinguistic practice. (Guest editor: Olga Shipunova)

Technology as Language – Understanding Action in a Technical Condition (Deadline: September 21st, 2021):

The philosophy of technology and language meets theories of action. Actions are understood in reference to reasons and causes which are formed in a social setting. The hermeneutics of action takes on a further dimension, however, when technical agency and technological activity are brought into play. Of particular interest are the symbols and tools of labor as knowledge is translated into action. Another focus is on technology and semiosis or the technical generation of the signs and sign systems that structure and constrain action – especially interesting and problematic in the age of self-learning technical systems. (Guest editor: Alexander Nesterow)

Queries, suggestions, and submissions can be addressed to or to Daria Bylieva ( and Alfred Nordmann (

Alfred Nordmann
Institut für Philosophie, Technische Universität Darmstadt

Daria Bylieva
Philosophy, Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University

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