08 August 2019 | Story Rulanzen Martin | Photo Rulanzen Martin
Indexicality Research Group
The speakers and members of the forum at the colloquium from left; Thys Heidenrich (Drama and Theatre Arts); Dr Martin Rossouw (Art History and Image Studies); Xany Jansen van Vuuren (Linguistics and Language Practice); Kavish Jawahar (Rhodes University); Nessrin Khalil; Prof Kobus Marais (Linguistics and Language Studies); Danilda Els (Centre for Teaching and Learning) and Leon Snyman (Odeion School of Music)

A new research forum launched at the University of the Free State (UFS) hopes to shed new light on social-cultural reality. The socio-cultural tradition looks at the ways we interactively work out understandings, meanings, norms and rules in communication.
The new interdepartmental group called the Indexicality Research Forum (IRF) is the brainchild of Prof Kobus Marais from the Department of Linguistics and Language Practice at UFS.

“The forum should be some kind of umbrella network, rather than a fixed group, studying various aspects of the emergence of social-cultural reality,” says Prof Marais. The forum was officially launched on Friday 19 July 2019 at a research colloquium attended by members from various UFS academic departments as well as Kavish Jawahar from Rhodes University. 

For Prof Marais the forum will be “studying various aspects of the emergence of social-cultural reality by using the notion of indexicality as conceptualised by Charles Peirce”. 
Peirce was a US scientist and philosopher best known as the earliest proponent of pragmatism. 

It is structured around these Five research questions

The forum consists of the following departments in the faculty; Linguistics and Language Practice, Drama and Theatre Arts, Art History and Image Studies, and the Odeion School of Music, as well Curriculum Studies at Rhodes University. “Internationally, the scholars from the Department of Arts and Design from the Federal University of Juis de Fora in Brazil will also take part in the forum.” 

The research forum is not solely for Humanities students but scholars of development studies, cultural studies, mathematics, biology and medicine would also benefit. 

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