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Tuesday 1 to 2.30 pm

Thursday 10 to 11.30 am

The books from the library are available by appointment: please contact our secretary Iris Franke via

Our current research projects:

June 2017

June 2nd

Stuttgart Research Focus (SRF), an institution working across faculties to promote interdisciplinary research in the fields of linguistics and cognition at Stuttgart University, organized the „Week of Gesture and Sign“. Following an invitation by Dr. Cornelia Ebert,  Dr. Silva Ladewig participated with a presentation on "Integrating gestures by replacing nouns and verbs of spoken language".

June 9th-11th

Chair members Lena Hotze, Dr. Dorothea Horst and Dr. Silva Ladewig participated in the International Conference on Multimodal Communication in Osnabrück.

Together with Dr. Jana Bressem (TU Chemnitz) Dr. Silva Ladewig gave a workshop on the topic „Methods of Gesture Analysis–analyzing multimodality from a cognitive-linguistic perspective“.

Furthermore, Dr. Dorothea Horst gave a presentation on "The embodied and multimodal dynamics of metaphor in campaign commercials".

Please follow the link for detailed information

June 21st- 23rd

Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller participated at the Conference “Language as a Form of Action” in Rome and gave a talk on the topic „Gestures as „as-if actions““.

„The aim of the conference is to approach gesture and sign language research in an interdisciplinary way by bringing together researchers working on these topics from the fields of linguistics, neuroscience, developmental psychology, developmental robotics, philosophy, and other related disciplines. We aim to explore the concept of “language” in its full complexity, i.e., by considering the interaction of vocal and manual (including non-manual features) modalities in spoken languages as well as in signed languages.“ (source)

May 2017

Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller as well as Lena Hotze met up in Moscow with fellow experts to discuss and elaborate the newest developtments of the ongoing research project „Verbal and co-verbal means of event contrual across languages“ 


For more information about the project, follow the link.

March 2017

As an expert on gestures, Dr. Silva Ladewig supported the “Haus der kleinen Forscher” (“House of the little researchers”), a foundation that provides education for pedagogic staff and teachers.

She participated in the series “Andere Länder, andere Gesten” (“Other countries, other gestures”) focusing on emblems in different cultures. Several gestures were presented that can be important to know when working with children from other countries – to facilitate understanding and prevent from misconceptions.

The entire article is available here.

4 March

Dr. Silva Ladewig was invited by Prof. Dr. Rolf-Torsten Kramer to give an introduction to multimodal communication at the 6th AG Kasuistik.

Link to the AG Kasuistik

February 2017

From October 31 to November 2nd 2016, the workshop „Methods in Multimodal Communication Research“ (MeMuMo) took place at MSLU in Moscow.

During this workshop, Prof.  Dr. Alan Cienki (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Moscow State Linguistic University), Prof. Dr. Aliyah Morgenstern (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris) and Prof Dr. Cornelia Müller (Europa-Universität Viadrina, Frankfurt/Oder) gave an interview on their current project „Verbal and co-verbal means of event construal across languages“. In this project they investigate how linguistic world-views, based on grammatical expressions of time contours, have emerged in Russian, French and German in the form of aspect systems. 

The full interview is available here: Link

December 2016
From December 1st to 2nd, Dorothea Horst as well as Prof. Dr. Nicole Richter and Janett Haid from the Chair of Multicultural Communication (Slavonic and English Linguistics and Languagr Use), attended the conference „Metaphors and politicl discourse“ (Metapol) in Liège, Belgium. Together, they gave a presentation on the construction of enemy images in populist discourse, using examples of multimodal metaphors. Furthermore, Dorothea Horst presented some of the results of her dissertation project. There she compared how candidates in a German and a Polish election campaign ad used different dynamic forms of metaphorizing.
October 2016

13 October

On October 13, Dr. Silva Ladewig gave a presentation at Bildungscampus Nürnberg. In her lecture „What our body knows and what it communicates. „Body language“ from the perspective of modern Gesture Studies.“ she spoke about the field of research in general and about the different functions of gestures. Furthermore, the lecture focused on cultural differences and similarities regarding gestures.

Follow the link for further information.

5 - 7 October

The International Conference Cognitive approaches to interaction and language attitudes was held at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Campus Duisburg. It was the 7th Conference of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association. Several research associates of the Chair for Language Use and Multimodal Communication participated in the scientific exchange. Presentations by Lena Hotze „Filling a research gap? Multimodal constructions in preschool children” and Franziska Boll „Gestural alignment in consecutive interpreting?“ were well attended and sparked fruitful discussions.

Follow the link for futher information.

August 2016

The Chair for Language Use and Multimodal Communication under Chair Holder Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller has contributed a video installation to the exhibition „SPRACHE - Welt der Worte, Zeichen, Gesten“ („LANGUAGE - World of words, signs, gestures“) at the German Hygiene Museum, Dresden.

 The installation „Bedeutung (be)greifen. Metaphern in Sprache und Geste“ („Grasping meaning. Metaphors in language and gestures“) deals with metaphors that are expressed through language and gestures and is open to the public from 24 september 2016 - 20 august 2017.

 Further information about the exhibition is available here.

July 2016

From July 18-20, the 7th ISGS conference (International Society of Gesture Studies) took place in Paris, France. Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller as well as research associates Dr. Silva Ladewig, Franziska Boll and Lena Hotze participated in the conference.

Invited as a plenary speaker, Dr. Cornelia Müllere gave a lecture on the topic „Frames of Experience - The Embodied Meanng of Gestures“.

Furthermore Dr.Silva Ladewig was speaker at the pre-conference workshop presenting and discussing NEUROGES and LASG
(together with Jana Bressem, Hedda Lausberg, Konrad Juszczyk)

Other members of the chair also presented theoretical approaches as well as their latest research results. Presentations: Silva Ladewig, Lena Hotze & Franziska Boll "How discourse shapes the understanding of gesture", Lena Hotze “Filling a research gap? Multimodal constructions in preschool children”, Franziska Boll “Gestural alignment in consecutive interpreting?

Further informaton is available here.

7. ISGS-Konferenz ©Konrad Juszczyk

(Bild: Konrad Juszczyk)

June 2016
For their joint interdisciplinary research-focused seminar Auf dem Weg zum ‚perfekten Text’ (Ways to write a ‚perfect text’), Dorothea Horst and Katrin Girgensohn received the Teaching Award from the State of Brandenburg 2016, awarded by the Ministry of Economics (MWFK).
Here you can find press information on the websites of EUV and MWFK.

LLP_2016 Doro ©Franziska Liebetanz

(Bild: Franziska Liebetanz)

May 2016

Dr. Silva Ladewig and Franziska Boll are producing a new image film for the bachelor's programme of the ‘Faculty of Social and Cultural Science’ within their seminar „KuWi goes film: mutual progress and conceptualisation of a new image film“. The creative process is realised in conjunction with their students. Since one aim of the movie is to incorporate as many perspectives and ideas as possible we are calling for a collective brain storming. This brainstorming will take place at the art festival „ART an der Grenze“ in form of an installation with the guiding question “What do you associate with the Faculty of Social and Cultural Science at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt Oder?“. Everyone is welcome to participate and illustrate their ideas in form of words, pictures, forms or colours. The kick-off event of the installation will take place on Tuesday, 3rd of May, at 3 pm. The location is Große-Scharrnstraße 8, the so-called study mile. The installation will be open during the whole festival. Follow this link for further information. Participate and show us your associations with the bachelor programme!

The corresponding article published in the ViadrINFO is available under following link.

Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies Cinepoetics
The Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies Cinepoetics is promoted by the DFG and deals with the hypothesis that cinematic pictures need to be understood as parties in the discourse of audiovisual pictures. During the winter term 2015/16 and the summer term 2016 Cornelia Müller runs the Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies Cinepoetics. Workshops with the focus on “metaphors and film” are held regularly with specific topics.
Event Reports of the workshops are available through the following link.
February 2016
Dr. Silva Ladewig participated in the BrownBagLectures II. These lectures were initiated by Jürgen Neyer, dean of the Faculty of Social and Cultural Science, in order to originate a self-conception of the Faculty. In her talk about "Cultural knowledge in our hands? Verbal-gestural communication as a research field of Cultural Science" she showed how gesture studies can be incorporated within Cultural Science. The presentation is available here.
Dorothea Horst welcomed in her seminar “The picture of the ‘refugee’. A critical analysis of the media discourse on refugees” the journalist Joanna Stolarek from the local newspaper ‘Märkischen Oderzeitung’ and a member of the state parliament René Wilke. The guests discussed in together with the students the use of language and press coverage in regard to the current discourse on refugees.
January 2016
The team participated in the opening from the SignGes Centers (competence center for sign language and gestures) of the RWTH University, Aachen, from 21st until 22nd of January. The topic of the launching event was "Sign language and Gestures - principles and implementations". Please, use the following link for further information.
December 2015

2015-12-18 11.35.40 ©Lena Hotze

The Chair of Language Use and Multimodal Communication and the junior professorship of Language Use and Applied Linguistics welcomed international scientists from Poznan and Torun on December 18th to a practically oriented workshop "Data session and video analysis", conducted within the frameworks of our research network Dynamic Multimodal Communication and the Viadrina Gesture Center. This event offered an exchange platform on up-to-date research and analysis. The following event will take place in May 2016 at the University of Adam Mickiewicz in Poznan.

November 2015

The team participated in this year's workshop Mapping Multimodal Dialogue (MaMuD 3) on 19th and 20th of November. The focus of the event was the Acquisition of multimodal interaction. More detailed information is provided here.

October 2015

Silva Ladewig participated in a research seminar at the Oulu University in Finland, which took place from October 22 to October 24. Pentti Haddington and his team organized the event "The Language-Gesture-Connection" (LaGeCon) with international researchers, in order to introduce and to discuss new approaches in multimodality studies. Not only the experts' voices of Jürgen Streeck, Tommi Jantuunen and Silva Ladewig were heard during the workshop - the participating junior scientists also had an opportunity to present and discuss their research. The cooperation between Viadrina and Oulu Universities will foster further scientific interchange.

IMG_6979_Oulu ©Silva Ladewig

In the beginning of October Prof. Cornelia Müller visited the Faculty of Letters of the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) in Belo Horizonte (Brasil). Invited as a plenary speaker, she took part in the 5th international conference "Metaphor and Thought", presenting her paper on "Metaphor and gesture". Over 200 researchers in the field of metaphoricity and it's role in language and cognition participated in this international event.

20151010_144345 ©Cornelia Müller

(Picture: Luciane Corrêa Ferreira and Cornelia Müller)

September 2015
Based on the results of an interdisciplinary research seminar On the way to a perfect text, conducted by Dorothea Horst in cooperation with Katrin Girgensohn in the winter term 2014/15, an article appeared in the journal Schreiben. This article published the results of students' and both lecturers' case studies on the topic of text revision as a didactical instrument in writing-intensive seminars.

You will find the press review here.

July 2015

This year's 13th ICLC (International Cognitive Linguistics Conference) took place in Newcastle, accommodating linguists from around the world. The topic of the conference, "Bringing together theory and method", derived from last year's congress. The Chair of Prof. Cornelia Müller also contributed to the session, presenting theoretical approaches and up-to-date research findings. Our presentations list as follows: Cornelia Müller & Jana Bressem "The Family of Away Gestures: Embodied roots of negative assessment, refusal, and negation",  Cornelia Müller & Benjamin Marienfeld "Feeling for speaking and the dynamics of multimodal discourse", Silva H. Ladewig "Conceptual reification and sequential scanning in gestures? On Gestures and their relation to nouns and verbs of spoken language", Silva Ladewig, Lena Hotze & Franziska Boll "How discourse shapes the understanding of gesture", Dorothea Horst "Subtle Messages of Campaign Commercials".

2015-08-06 15.13.02 Kopie ©Lena Hotze

May 2015

Franziska Boll participated at the 6th AFLiCO Language, Cognition and Society ( in Grenoble and gave a talk on the topic "Same tale - same gestures? Dynamic multimodal meaning making in consecutive story telling".

Anhang 1 ©Franziska Boll

January - December 2015

Multimodal Constructions of Threat: Conceptualizing danger and enemies in populist discourse about the EU in Germany and Poland (in cooperation with the Chair for Language Use and Applied Linguistics): Multimodal analysis of danger conceptualizations within the EU-critical discourse of right-wing parties in Germany and Poland. Learn more in our Research Report or at the Homepage of the Chair for Language Use and Applied Linguistics.

September 2014 - December 2016

The interrelation of verbal and co-verbal means of event construal across languages (international research project): The project scrutinizes differences in descriptions of event structure between French, German and Russian speakers, based on divergent lexical and grammatical aspects found in each language. You can learn more in our Research Report or at the Homepage of the Centre for Socio-Cognitive Discourse Studies at MSLU.

Our chair is happy to introduce Prof. Dr. Fabiszak and Dr. Jelec from the Department of Cognitive Linguistics of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan as our guest lecturers this spring term! You can learn more about both researchers, their main research foci and scientific work if click the following link.
November 2014

Chairholder Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller as well as her co-workers Franziska Boll, Dorothea Horst, Lena Hotze, and Benjamin Marienfeld participated at the the Mapping Multimodal Dialogue Workshop (MaMuD 2) in Leuven, where a multidisciplinary community of researchers met in order to talk about the cognitive underpinnings of multimodal dialogue.

October 2014

The new HSK-Book "Body-Language-Communication: Volume 2" is completed and edited by the chairholder Cornelia Müller, Alan Cienki, Ellen Fricke, Silva H. Ladewig, David McNeill and Jana Bressem.Volume II of the handbook offers a unique collection of exemplary case studies. In five chapters and 99 articles it presents the state of the art on how body movements are used for communication around the world. Topics include the functions of body movements, their contexts of occurrence, their forms and meanings, their integration with speech, and how bodily motion can function as language. By including an interdisciplinary chapter on ‘embodiment’, volume II explores the body and its role in the grounding of language and communication from one of the most widely discussed current theoretical perspectives. Volume II of the handbook thus entails the following chapters:

VI. Gestures across cultures,

VII. Body movements: functions, contexts and interactions,

VIII. Gesture and language,

IX. Embodiment: the body and its role for cognition, emotion, and communication,

X. Sign Language: Visible body movements as language.

Please, use the following link for further information.

September 2014
The chairholder Cornelia Müller was invited as one of the plenary speakers at the first conference of the International Association for Cognitive Semiotics (IACS) held at the Lund University in Sweden.
July 2014

Cornelia Müller introduced one special family of the recurrent gestures with the talk „The family of away gestures. Embodied roots of negative assessment, refusal, and negation“ at the 6th ISGS-Conference (International Society of Gesture Studies) taking place at the University of California, San Diego.

Furthermore, she participated at the event „Expert Eyes“ together with internationally-known gesture researchers like  Adam Kedon, Alan Cienki, Marjorie Goodwin, Chuck Goodwin and Jürgen Streeck. They analysed two videos which they had not seen before and shared their first ideas with the plenum.

In addition, Adam Kendon was rewarded with the book  „From Gesture in Conversation to Visible Action as Utterance. Essays in honor of Adam Kendon“  by the co-author Cornelia Müller and the editors Mandana Seyfeddinipur und Marianne Gullberg in a ceremony.


July to October 2014
The chair of language use and multimodal communication , especially chairholder Prof. Dr. Cornelia Müller, welcomes the brazilian CAPES scholarshipholder Carlos Silva from the University Sao Paulo (USP) for a research stay at the European University Viadrina. He works and researches in areas as music, theatre, and modern dance as well as movement and gesture. Inspired by his passion "Capoeira" which he started in his youth he has focused on movement and gesture ever since. He studied Humanities at the University of Sao Paulo and Music at the University of Campina (Unicamp). After he stayed in Stuttgart at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst (1991/1992) putting an emphasis on rhythmics, he deepened his knowledge about this topic next to his schooling in rhythmical-musical education at the Rhytmikon in München (1992-1995). He finished his master`s thesis "Sound, Music, Act: Dalcroze enacts- the rhythm and language of enactment." in 2005 followed by his promotion "Gesture as an enacting tool regarding  movement and action: from every day life to scene" that analyses gestures in performing arts.
June 2014

Due to the 10-years anniversary of the RaAM-Conference (Researching and Applying Metaphor) in Cagliaria, Sardinia, part of our team had the possibility to present recent science projects regarding the topic "metaphors" and to exchange point of views of different scientist working in this area.. Paricipants like Ray Gibbs, Alan Cienki and Charles Foreville enriched the conference with their methodical and theoretical lectures. The talk of Cornelia Müller "Feeling for speaking: Bodily experiences ground figurative and non-figurative ways of talking about emotions" (Cornelia Müller und Benjamin Marienfeld) as well as the talk by Franziska Boll and lena Hotze "Interactive metaphor: How metaphoric meaning emerges from conversation"  were numerously attended and constructive questioned.

Please, take a look at the programme.


May 2014

Prof. Dr. Konrad Ehlich visited the university to present his guest lecture "Nonverbal Communication and Functional Pragmatic" with regards to the scientific work of the "Viadrina Gesture Center" and the "Dynamic Multimodal Communication Group". He talked about the mimics, gestures and proxemics from an speechact-theoretical point of view.

Please, take a look at the press release (p. 14).

February 2014

The second workshop "Speech and Gesture-Embodied Cultural Practices" organized by the DMC-Group and the Viadrina Gesture Center took place on the 3rd of February. International scientists of various research areas have been invited to discuss about multimodal communication. The centre of this meeting has been the work of the anthropologist and linguist Jürgen Streeck and his praxeological view on gestures.


Please, take a look at the press release (p. 11).

Bildschirmfoto 2014-02-17 um 20.40.45 ©Lehrstuhl Müller

November 2013

The chairs for Language Use and Multimodal Communication and for Language Use and Applied Linguistics are jointly organising the german-polish linguistic conference "Embodiment, Cognition and Language" in Słubice.

The conference is supposed to be the start of a variety of events and aims at bringing together researchers who are dealing with the usage of languages in different contexts.

More information.

Bildschirmfoto 2014-02-17 um 20.36.27 ©Lehrstuhl Müller
October 2013
How do linguistics and architecture fit together? The intersection is the mutual research area of metaphors. On the 24th of October, Cornelia Müller gave a lecture on "metaphors and gestures". Subsequently, there was a discussion with the architecture students on metaphors.

At the international seminar "new directions in metaphor research" (program) in Slagelse/Denmark, Cornelia Müller gave her presentation: "The emotional side of metaphor. Metaphors in gestures and audio-visuals" which offers insight into the emotional aspects of metaphors.

Cornelia Slagelse (1) ©Lehrstuhl

A successful week for MMK in Nice, as always with wit and pleasure. Exciting final exams, interesting talks with students and colleagues.

IMG_1019 ©Mueller
June 2013
Cornelia Müller was at this year's ICLC (International Cognitive Linguistic Conference) in Edmonton and, together with Terry Janzen and Barbara Schaffer, organized a "theme session" around the topic Embodiment and Grammaticalization: Perspectives from Signed Languages and Gesture Studies.

As part of this, she also held a presentation with Silva Ladewig on Embodiment and Abstraction - The Experential Basis of Gesture formationAbstract

On Friday, the 21 of June, Cornelia Müller held a talk about The emotional side of metaphor. Metaphors in gestures and audio-visuals. at Berkeley Gesture Center. Abstract

CM Foto ©CM Foto

May 2013
RaAM Seminar 2013 "Metaphor, Metonymy and Emotions" in Poznan, Poland


The chair "Language Use and Multimodal Communication" from Cornelia Müller has collaborated with Hermann Kappelhoff's team from the FU Berlin to take part at the RaAm Seminar 2013. Current Research results were discussed through different presentations.

Am%20Homepage-%20und%20RaAM-tauglichsten ©Lehstuhl

Cornelia Müller held presentation at a plenary session about "The emotional side of metaphor: : Metaphors in gestures and in audiovisuals". Abstract

raam_2013_186 ©Lehstuhl

Dorothea Böhme spoke about "The interplay of affect-modulation and multimodal metaphor in German and Polish campaign commercials". Abstract

raam_2013_031 ©Lehrstuhl

Dorothea Böhme and Franziska Boll held a presentation together about "Gesture's affective dimension and the dynamics of multimodal metaphor in face-to-face communication". Abstract raam_2013_042 ©Lehstuhl