David Block

David Block is ICREA Research Professor in Sociolinguistics at the University of Lleida (Spain). He joined ICREA in September 2012 after 16 years at the University College London, Institute of Education, where he was Professor of Languages in Education. Prior to that, he worked in Barcelona for 18 years as an English teacher in centres such as ESADE, and as a part-time Lecturer in Applied Linguistics at the Universitat de Barcelona and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. He completed his PhD in Applied Linguistics at the University Lancaster (UK) in 1995. He has published on a variety of topics in language education and sociolinguistics and is currently interested in a range of multimodal practices, drawing on scholarship in political economy, sociology, anthropology and geography. In recent years, he has focussed on neoliberalism as the dominant rationality in contemporary societies and class as a key dimension of being. His books include The social turn in second language acquisition (Edinburgh University Press, 2003), Second language identities (Continuum/Bloomsbury, 2007/2014), Social class in applied linguistics (Routledge,  2014), Political economy and sociolingüístics: Neoliberalism, inequality and social class (Bloomsbury, 2018) and (with Lídia Gallego-Balsà) Minority ethnic students in higher education: Talking multilingualism and identity (Multilingual Matters, in preparation). He is a member of the Academy of the Social Sciences (UK) and editor of the Routledge book series Language, Society and Political Economy.

  • Political economy and how it can inform thinking about globalization and identity, and a specific interest in neoliberalism as the dominant ideology in contemporary societies.
  • Socioeconomic inequality and stratification and class and how they relate to issues in sociolinguistics.
  • Multimodal identity-making practices of all kinds (including social movements, multiculturalism, bi/multilingualism and the acquisition and use of languages)
  • Issues in multi/bilingualism in contemporary societies.

Publications (2017):

  • Block, D. (2017). Discourses in conflict: resource inequality, class warfare and home repossessions. Social Semiotics, 27 (3): 255-264.
  • Block, D. (2017). Political economy in applied linguistics research. Language Teaching, 50 (1): 32-64.
  • Block, D. (2017). Positioning theory and life-story interviews: discursive fields, gaze and resistance. In S. Bagga-Gupta, A. Hansen & J. Feilberg (eds) Identity revisited and reimagined. Empirical and theoretical contributions on embodied communication across time and space. Berlin: Springer, pp. XX
  • Block, D. (2017). Researching language and social class in education. In K. King & Y.-J. Lai (eds) Research methods. Encyclopedia of language and education, Volume 10, 3rd edition. New York: Springer, pp. XX
  • Block, D. (2017). Journey to the centre of language teacher identity. In G. Barkhuizen (ed.) Reflections on language teacher identity research. London: Routledge, pp. 31-36.
  • Block, D. (2017). Migration, language and social class. In S. Canagarajah (ed) Routledge handbook on migration and language. London: Routledge, pp. 133-148.
  • Block, D. (2017). London stories revisited: Algunes reflexions sobre les contribucions a aquest volum. In C. Feixa, C. Rubio, J. Ganau, & F. Solsona (eds) L’EMIGRANT 2.0 Emigració juvenil, nous moviments socials i xarxes digitals. Barcelona: Col·lecció Estudis Observatori Català de la Joventut Universitat de Lleida – Programa RecerCaixa, pp. 261-267.
  • Block, D. (2017). Algunas reflexiones sobre la ‘pos-verdad’. La Maleta de Portbou.
  • Block, D. (2017) Review of Kathryn Woolard (2016) Singular and Plural: Ideologies of Linguistic Authority in 21st Century Catalonia. New York: Oxford University Press. Catalan Review, 31: 149-152.
  • Block, D. (2017) Review of Michele Gazzola and Bengt-Arne Wickström (eds) (2016).  The Economics of Language Policy. Cambridge, MASS: MIT Press. Language and Intercultural Communication, DOI: 10.1080/14708477.2017.1326353, pp. 1-3.

Upcoming publications: 2018

  • Block, D. (2018). Political Economy in Sociolinguistics: Neoliberalism, Inequality and Social Class. London: Bloomsbury.
  • Block, D. (2018). Comments on language, education and neoliberalism. Language and Intercultural Communication, 18 (3).
  • Block, D. (2018). The political economy of language education research (or the lack thereof): Nancy Fraser and the case of translanguaging. Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, 15 (TBD).
  • Block, D. (2018). The neoliberal citizen in theory and (discursive) practice. Critical Discourse Studies, 15 (TBD)
  • Block, D. & Gray, J. (2018). French language textbooks as ideologically imbued cultural artefacts: Political economy, neoliberalism and (self) branding. In S. Coffey & U.  Wingate (eds). New directions for language learning in the 21st century. London: Routledge.
  • Block, D. (2018). Inequality and class in language policy and planning. In J. Tollefson & M. Pérez-Milans (eds) The Oxford handbook of language policy and planning. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Block, D. (2018). What is language commodification?. In S. Breidbach, L. Küster & B. Schmenk (eds) Sloganizations in language education discourse. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Block, D. (2018). The materiality and semiosis of inequality and class struggle and warfare: the case of home evictions in Spain. In R. Wodak & B. Forchtner (eds) Routledge handbook of language and politics. London: Routledge, pp. 646-559.
  • Block, D. (2018). Class and class warfare. In J. Flowerdew & J. Richardson (eds) Routledge handbook of critical discourse analysis. London: Routledge, pp. 345-358.
  • Block, D. (2018). Revisando el constructo de “identidad” en lingüística aplicada: Antecedentes, bases, aclaraciones conceptuales e interseccionalidad. In S. Pfleger (ed.) Lenguaje y construcción de la identidad: Una mirada desde diferentes ámbitos. México: CELE, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.

Currently working on:

  • * Block D. & Gallego-Balsà, L. (2018) Minority Ethnic Students in Higher Education: Talking Multilingualism and Identity. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • * Editing two commissioned books for my Routledge book series Language, Society and Political Economy.
  • * Individually and in conjunction with UdL colleagues, the preparation of research grant proposals.

Tools for Research in English Studies
Programme: Grau en Estudis Anglesos/Grau en Llengües Aplicades i Traducció, 2017-2018