Sie sind hier: FRIAS School of Language & … Fellows Prof. Dr. Monica Heller

Prof. Dr. Monica Heller

University of Toronto
Juni 2013


Monica Heller received her Ph.D. in Linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley in 1982. Since then, she has been at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto, where she is now Full Professor with a cross-appointment to the Department of Anthropology. She is also has a nominal appointment in the Département d’études françaises of the Université de Moncton, and has been Visiting Professor in Germany, Brazil, Belgium, France, Spain and Finland. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and Vice-President and President-Elect of the American Anthropological Association. She held the Konrad Adenauer Forschungspreis of the Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung in 2001 at the Institut für Deutsche Sprache (Mannheim) and the Universität Freiburg. Her work focuses on transformations of ideologies and practices of language and nation in the globalized new economy, with an ethnographic focus on francophone North Canada and its transnational ties to Europe and the rest of the Americas, and more broadly on the role of language in the construction of social difference and social inequality. She has published in such journals as the Journal of Sociolinguistics, Language in Society, Langage et société and Language Policy. Her most recent book is Paths to Postnationalism: A Critical Ethnography of Language and Identity (2011, Oxford University Press).


Publikationen (Auswahl)

Bücher und Herausgeberschaften

Monica Heller

  • 1988 (ed.) Codeswitching: Anthropological and Sociolinguistic Perspectives,. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
  • 1994 Crosswords: Language, Ethnicity and Education in French Ontario. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
  • 2002 Éléments d’ une sociolinguistique critique. Paris: Didier.
  • 2007 (ed.) Bilingualism: A Social Approach. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • 2011 Paths to Postnationalism: A Critical Ethnography of Language and Identity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Monica Heller, with Mark Campbell, Phyllis Dalley, and Donna Patrick

  • 2006 Linguistic Minorities and Modernity: A Sociolinguistic Ethnography (2nd edition). London: Continuum (First edition 1999, London: Longman.)

Monica Heller, Lindsay Bell, Michelle Daveluy, Mireille McLaughlin and Hubert Noël

  • In prep. Sustaining the Nation: Natural Resources, the New Economy and the Making of a National Minority. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Monica Heller and Marilyn Martin-Jones (eds.)
  • 2001 Voices of Authority: Education and Linguistic Difference. Westport CT: Ablex.

Monica Heller and Bonnie McElhinny

  • In prep. Reimagining Linguistic Anthropology: The Political Economy of a Discipline.Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Alexandre Duchêne and Monica Heller (eds.)

  • 2007 Discourses of Endangerment: Ideology and Interest in the Defense of Languages. London: Continuum.
  • 2011 Language in Late Capitalism: Pride and Profit. London: Routledge.


  • 2002 “Globalization, the new economy and the commodification of language and identity”. Journal of Sociolinguistics 7(4): 473-492.
  • 2010 “The commodification of language”. Annual Review of Anthropology 39: 101-114.

Monica Heller and Josiane Boutet

  • 2006 “Vers de nouvelles formes de pouvoir langagier? Langue(s) et identities dans la nouvelle économie”. Langage et Société 118: 5-16.

Emanuel da Silva and Monica Heller

  • 2009 “From protector to producer: the role of the State in the discursive shift from minority rights to economic development”. Language Policy 8(2): 95-116.



Linguistics, nation and state in German-speaking Europe

My work at FRIAS is intended to contribute to the development of a book manuscript, co-authored with Bonnie McElhinny (University of Toronto), entitled Reimagining Linguistic Anthropology: The Political Economy of a Discipline (under contract with University of Toronto Press). Our central goal is to tell a different story about language in the world from that found in most discussions of linguistic anthropology or sociolinguistics, one which asks what kinds of political economic conditions produce what ways of thinking about language, culture and society. It is a loosely chronological, genealogical account of Western ways of thinking about language, culture, identity, nation and state as crystallized in academic disciplines related to linguistic antjhropology an das related to the shifting conditions of capitalism. At FRIAS, I aim to work on the particular histories of the study of language, culture and society in German-speaking Europe from the mid-19th century to today.