workshop on
Corpus-Based & Processing Approaches to Figurative Language

Thursday 29th March 2001 (all day)

as part of


main programme 30th March - 2nd April 2001
Lancaster University, England

Corpus Linguistics 2001 conference webpage



The workshop will accommodate both figurative-language research that is centred on corpora and figurative-language research that is centred on AI or psychological processing models that make some use of corpora or throw light on the use of corpora.

Figurative language (including, but not limited to, metaphor, metonymy, idioms and irony) is pervasive in discourse, both mundane and literary, and has attracted considerable interest from linguists, computational linguists, psychologists and others for a long time. In most cases these studies have worked with a small amount of artificial data or textbook examples. In recent years the rising interest in and availability of large-scale natural language corpora has made it possible to broaden these studies, and several researchers in figurative language have started to make use of corpora, both large and small. This movement involves computational, theoretical, applied and cognitive linguists.

However, the linkage between corpora and figurative language is still a relatively new one, in need of greater interaction between, and mutual awareness among, the interested parties. With the workshop we aim to provide a forum that will contribute to such interaction and awareness, both within individual disciplines such as applied linguistics, AI and psychology and between different disciplines. We also want to provide a forum for mapping out similarities and interactions between different strands of research within or across disciplines to encourage future collaborations.

One focus of the workshop is that of mapping out desiderata for and problems with corpora for figurative language research. Here the inclusion of different types of researcher -- theoretical linguists, applied linguists, computational linguists, cognitive linguists, psychologists, etc. -- will bring a valuable mix of different perspectives.

We invite papers on topics including but not limited to the following:

We also follow the theme of the main conference in not limiting the kinds of corpora the contributions use too strictly, allowing different kinds and sizes of collections of speech or text, including dictionaries and literary works.

Papers are welcomed on the above issues and others. There is plenty of scope for lively, interdisciplinary debate at the Workshop, as well as opportunities for taking stock of the current situation and the prospects for the next few years.


The workshop will occupy a full day. We expect about 10 talks of 30 minutes including 10 minutes of discussion time each. We will enforce the discussion time strictly. The workshop will also include two discussion sessions on topics identified as salient during the day. In addition, we will allow posters to be set up at the beginning of the day as well as software demonstrations, viewable during breaks.

Papers, posters and software demonstrations will be selected by the workshop organizers on the basis of submitted two-page abstracts.

A collection of accepted abstracts will be made available to all participants at the workshop. A proceedings of full papers will be published after the event. The separate possibility of creating an edited collection (book or journal special issue) will be entertained at or after the workshop.

Please note that the full papers for the workshop will not be part of the main conference proceedings. However, the conference organizers are planning to make electronic versions of main-conference papers on a CD Rom, and it is likely that accepted *abstracts* for the workshop will also be on it.

We assume that software demos will normally be on laptops brought by authors. However, if some other arrangement is required, we will need to confer with the main conference organizers.

There will be some space for non-presenting participants. Please contact one of the organizers if interested.


Authors wishing to present a talk, poster or software demonstration should submit an abstract whose main text is one to two pages when printed at a font size of 10-12 points. The page limit does not include title, author details, references, tables, etc. There are no particular style rules. Authors should should send submissions by BY EMAIL, and NOT in the form of disks. Submissions should be in PLAIN TEXT or HTML, NOT in the form of Word, RTF, Postscript, PDF files or the like. This is to facilitate the production of HTML webpages containing the abstracts.

An abstract should include a title, author names, electronic and surface addresses of the authors, an indication of the corresponding author, and a specification of whether a talk, poster or demo is intended.

A talk/poster author may also wish to present a related demo. In this case, we expect the author normally to supply just the talk/poster abstract together with a brief indication of the nature of the demo. But if an author wishes to present both a talk/poster and a demo that is not strongly related to it, he/she should send separate abstracts.

Additionally, an author may wish to split what is conceptually one presentation between an oral paper and a poster. In this case, JUST ONE abstract should be submitted, with an indication of how the split will be done, or with a brief indication of any major additional material to be included in the displayed poster.

Submissions (the emails and the printouts) should be sent to organizer Katja Markert (see below).

Authors of accepted talk/poster abstracts are expected to supply a full paper by the time of the workshop (exact date below). The papers should adhere strictly to the conference's full-paper style rules, and should be sent BY EMAILand not in the form of disks. The papers should be between 4 and 8 pages of printed length. A printout should be mailed to Katja Markert or brought to the workshop.

The proceedings will also include the software demo abstracts.


Abstract submission deadline: Monday 19 February 2001
Notification of acceptance or rejection: Wednesday 28 February 2001
Deadline for receipt of full papers for inclusion in WORKSHOP proceedings: Wednesday 28 March 2001 (i.e. the day before the workshop)

NOTE: The process is entirely independent of the submission process for the main conference, so IGNORE any action dates on the main-conference website. Also, the full papers for the workshop will NOT be part of the MAIN-CONFERENCE proceedings. (But see above for a comment on the possibility of workshop abstracts being included on a CD ROM version of the main-conference proceedings.)


John Barnden School of Computer Science
University of Birmingham
Birmingham B15 2TT
Mark Lee School of Computer Science
University of Birmingham Birmingham B15 2TT
Katja Markert Division of Informatics
University of Edinburgh
Edinburgh EH8 9LW

last modified 30th January 2001 by