Lieven Vandelanotte

NARC Fellowship | October 2023 - September 2025


Lieven VandelanotteLieven Vandelanotte is associate professor of English language and linguistics at UNamur, and research fellow in linguistics at KU Leuven, where he obtained his PhD in 2005. He has worked on topics in present-day English grammar and discourse from a broadly cognitive-functional perspective, with as main current interests speech and thought representation, viewpoint, and multimodality. In addition to a monograph on speech and thought representation in English (De Gruyter Mouton, 2009), to date he has published over 40 journal articles and book chapters, has co-edited five books on such topics as grammaticalization, textual choices in discourse, and corpus linguistics, and has co-edited special issues for the journals Cognitive Linguistics, English Text Construction, Journal of Pragmatics and Language Sciences. He also served as the editor responsible for the areas of linguistics (2010-2019) and literature (2012-2019) of the John Benjamins journal English Text Construction. He teaches a range of courses on English language, linguistics and proficiency, and on general linguistics, in Namur’s BA programme. He is currently Head of the Department of Germanic languages and literatures, and a member of the NaLTT institute steering board.

For more information, see Lieven Vandelanotte’s UNamur profile page; a  recent open access article on constructions of speech and thought representation is also available online.

Fondation Francqui StichtingResearch – Francqui research professorship 2023-2026

Grammar and use of speech and thought representation and viewpoint constructions across text and image

A lot of what people talk and write about concerns the words and thoughts of others or of themselves, whether real or imagined. This is true across a broad range of text genres and contexts of interaction: novelists, newscasters, lawyers, students and scholars, professionals of all stripes and everyday conversationalists all report on what was said or thought in order to provide access to viewpoints, build on existing authority, contest ideas, spice up conversation, dramatize events narrated, and so much more.

Linguists have long had a special fascination with the forms languages have developed to incorporate speech and thought into discourse, and Lieven Vandelanotte’s main area of expertise has been in this domain, as applied to present-day English. In recent years, this interest has broadened into a more general interest in questions of viewpoint construction in different types of discourse, including multimodal artefacts which combine text with images, such as Internet memes. A particular focus for the Francqui research professorship pertains to the linguistic analysis of Internet memes as viewpoint-driven constructions combining both linguistic and visual form with identifiable meanings. A research monograph coauthored with Barbara Dancygier (The Language of Memes) is currently in progress, expanding a line of work begun with the article “Internet memes as multimodal constructions” published in Cognitive Linguistics (28:3) in 2017. The Francqui grant should also free up research time to prepare a book length study of speech and thought representation, updating and expanding the approach adopted in the (2009) book Speech and Thought Representation in English.

Keywords: cognitive linguistics, construction grammar, depiction, fictive interaction, Internet memes, multimodality, social media discourse, speech and thought representation, viewpoint

An accessible, introductory article on Internet memes viewed from linguistics, published in the popularizing magazine Babel, is available here.

Mentor: Barbara Dancygier, University of British Columbia (Vancouver)

Barbara DancygierBarbara Dancygier is a Professor and Distinguished University Scholar in the Department of English Language and Literatures at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver (Canada). As a cognitive linguist, she has worked on topics including conceptual viewpoint, conceptual metaphor theory, blending, and construction grammar, across a range of discourse types, including multimodal artefacts. This includes work which applies cognitive linguistic theories to literary discourse, including fictional narratives, poetry and drama.

Her awards and distinctions include a Fulbright Fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley (1991-1992), a Killam Research Prize at UBC (2011), a position as Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies at UBC (2012-2013), a Fellowship at the Institute of Advanced Study at Durham University (2015), and a Senior Research Fellowship at KU Leuven (2016). From 2017 to 2019 she was the President of the International Cognitive Linguistics Association, on whose board she served from 2013 to 2023. Her monographs to date (published by Cambridge University Press) include Conditionals and Prediction (1998), Mental Spaces in Grammar (coauthored with Eve Sweetser, 2005), The Language of Stories (2012) and Figurative Language (coauthored with Eve Sweetser, 2014). She coedited various volumes and journal special issues, and was sole editor responsible for the Cambridge Handbook of Cognitive Linguistics (2017).

Professor Dancygier knows Namur and its university well already, having been plenary speaker at the 2008 annual conference of the Belgian Association of Anglicists in Higher Education, and having co-organised and spoken at the 2019 international workshop Reviewing viewpoint.