Introduction to the Anglo-American Academic Discourse and Foundations in English Academic Writing & Speaking are English-language workshops for young scholars who wish to learn the rules of Anglo-American academic discourse. It is a great opportunity to acquire practical skills indispensable for scholars who want to present their ideas and research in English, both in speech and in writing.
“One of the first ideas we had when coming up with a program for the Witold Pilecki Center was to internationalize Polish scholarship. This can be done in various ways. One of them is to translate scholarly publications, another – to set up an English-language website with primary sources, such as Chronicles of Terror, which we will be launching in a couple of days. One more possibility is to create a space for young Polish scholars and researchers from different fields of the humanities and social sciences where, under the guidance of experienced teachers, they can practice various forms of presenting their ideas in English, both in speech and in writing.”, says dr. Wojciech Kozłowski Program Director of the Witold Pilecki Center for Totalitarian Studies.
It is often said that English is the new Latin of international academia. Thousands of articles and history books – although written in idiomatic English – pass unnoticed by the scholarly world. The Anglo-Saxon discourse is governed by a set of rules: the contents have to be properly structured and accordingly presented.
Therefore, workshop participants learn how to write English texts that would be both interesting and comprehensible for readers. They learn how to express their thoughts clearly, how to advance convincing arguments, how to structure their reasoning and present it in such a way as to back up conclusions.
“My scholarly interests center on cultural diplomacy, mainly American art exhibitions held in Poland after World War II. I am writing my doctoral dissertation in English, so obviously I find such classes very helpful”, says Diana Stelowska-Morgulec, University of Warsaw.
Participants of the second workshop series will be introduced to various aspects of writing and speaking in English. Young scholars will have the opportunity to present their research and intellectual interests to the teacher and the group and hear their opinions, advice, and suggestions. We want them to feel confident in public speaking, so they will practice delivering speeches (what is vital – without notes) and answering questions from the audience.
Enhancing writing skills in English remains an important part of the workshops. Participants will carry out critical analyses of published texts and create their own to present them to the group.
John Cornell received his Ph.D. in history from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he held a Rackham Humanities Research Fellowship, and his B.A. in musicology from the University of California, Berkeley. His research concerns the intersection of political and social history with musical practice, with a focus on France and the United States.
“First of all, I want to encourage participants to take a new approach and think about different ways of writing in English. It is about developing a narrative in an Anglo-American style, as we target specifically that academic market. I am interested in the ideas propounded by my students. We discuss them in the group and reflect on the ways they might be presented in order to achieve the goals sought”, John Cornell said.
Photos: Patrycja Mic