Danish and German as European neighbour languages

An international conference on language contact in border zones and urban cities

In 2020 Denmark and Germany celebrated the 100th anniversary of the current Danish-German political border, which appeared on the European map as a result of a referendum held within the border region. This event is known as “Genforeningen” (“the reunification”) in Danish historiography. Other European regions were also affected by a shift of political borders in the aftermath of World War I.

These borders have in common that they divided multilingual territories which are characterized by long-lasting language and dialect contact. European cities, on the other hand, have seen the emergence of new neighbourhoods, sometimes definable with geographical borders, and increasing their multilingual character.

With our conference we wish to shed light on the significance of borders for the contact varieties used in multilingual territory, both in a structural and a sociolinguistic perspective. We aim to improve our understanding of possible common and unique features in different contact situations.