Languages at War: Policies and Practices of Language Contacts in Conflict

Overview

Languages at War places foreign languages at the core and centre of war and conflict, arguing that 'foreignness' and foreign languages are key to our understanding of what happens on the ground of war. Using two case studies ? the liberation/occupation of Western Europe (1944-47), and peacekeeping/peace building in Bosnia-Herzegovina (1995-2000) ? it traces the role of languages in intelligence, pre-deployment preparations, deployment, soldier-civilian meetings, occupation and peace building. It examines the ...

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Languages at War: Policies and Practices of Language Contacts in Conflict

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Overview

Languages at War places foreign languages at the core and centre of war and conflict, arguing that 'foreignness' and foreign languages are key to our understanding of what happens on the ground of war. Using two case studies ? the liberation/occupation of Western Europe (1944-47), and peacekeeping/peace building in Bosnia-Herzegovina (1995-2000) ? it traces the role of languages in intelligence, pre-deployment preparations, deployment, soldier-civilian meetings, occupation and peace building. It examines the language policies which are developed in war and the language experiences of those who are caught up in conflict. Their voices, and in particular the testimonies of the language intermediaries in war ? the interpreters/translators-echo throughout these pages.

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Meet the Author

HILARY FOOTITT Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Modern Languages and European Studies at the University of Reading, UK. She has written widely on Allied/French relationships in the Second World War and on the discourse of women in politics, and was the Principal Investigator for the AHRC Project, ' Languages at War'.
MICHAEL KELLY Professor of French at the University of Southampton, UK. He is a specialist in French cultural history, and has written extensively on the experience of war in France. He is actively involved in supporting change in language teaching practice and theory, and in promoting linguistic and cultural diversity in the UK and across Europe.

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Table of Contents

List of Tables viii

Preface ix

Acknowledgements xi

List of Abbreviations xii

Notes on Contributors xiv

Introduction 1

Languages at war 1

Policy and practice 5

Recovering languages in war 9

The Languages at War project 13

Part I Intelligence

1 Languages in the Intelligence Community 19

Recruiting language specialists 20

Linguists in intelligence 26

Languages and the intelligence orthodoxies 30

Conclusions 33

2 Frameworks for Understanding 37

Politics, crisis and the demand for knowledge 40

A 1980s Serbo-Croat textbook 43

Serbo-Croat and the British military 46

Conclusions 49

3 The Human in Human Intelligence 54

Requisites for 'British' interrogators 55

At the front line: debriefing prisoners of war 58

Investigating war crimes 60

Interrogation centres 63

Conclusions 67

Part II Preparation and Support

4 Preparing to Liberate 73

Troops 75

Civil Affairs officers 80

Conclusions 86

5 Languages and Peace Operations 89

Being prepared 89

Meeting language needs 92

Pedagogical issues in language training 95

Building capacity for language support 98

Languages for military purposes 99

The results of preparation 102

Conclusions 104

6 Language Policy and Peace-Building 106

Language as a political question 109

The Dayton Peace Agreement, language rights and discrimination 111

Language policy and defence reform 115

Conclusions 117

Part III Soldier/Civilian Meetings

7 Occupying a Foreign Country 123

Invasion 124

Occupation 127

Conclusions 136

8 Fraternization 139

Occupation of space 141

Naming 145

Mobility 147

The gendered landscape 150

Sexual relations 155

Conclusions 158

Part IV Communicating Through Intermediaries

9 Military Interpreters in War 165

Interpreting in occupied Germany 166

Professionalizing interpreting and denazification: Nuremberg 171

Interpreting developed incrementally 175

Conclusions 180

10 Civilian Interpreting in Military Conflicts 184

'Cracking on': the UNPROFOR years 186

Interpreting as logistics: the British divisional headquarters 190

A professionalized service: LSB at HQ SFOR 193

Conclusions 196

11 Being an Interpreter in Conflict 201

Bosnia-Herzegovina 203

The Second World War 210

Conclusions 219

Conclusions 222

Intelligence 223

Preparation and support 229

Meetings between military and civilians 233

Communicating through intermediaries 238

Lessons learned 242

References 247

Index 259

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