Jan Blommaert is saying farewell to life. And as far as his public life is concerned, he does so in the way people have got to know him: astute, critical and engaged in the world around him, but not without questioning his own position in it. Jan Blommaert has always been an inspiring researcher and teacher, lecturing and writing on – as he summarises himself– “sociolinguistics, linguistic anthropology, discourse analysis and literacy research, always focused on (a) the sociocultural effects of online-offline globalization, especially new forms of superdiversity, (b) existing and new sociocultural inequalities in superdiverse contexts, (c) and the social-theoretical implications of all this”. To state it simply: Blommaert has always been a source of inspiration for anyone concerned with the relations between language, discourse, the commitment for socialism and the resistance to all forms of oppression.
What I write here is too trivial and dull. Better read his own retrospection on his academic life. It’s quite a long text, published in April on Jan Blommaert’s research blog Ctrl+Alt+Dem: Looking back: What was important? Or the same text as pdf: Looking back: what was important in my academic life.
A Dutch translation appeared in August on the site neerlandistiek.nl: Wat was er echt belangrijk in mijn academisch leven? and on his own blog in Dutch.
Please take a moment to read this honest and inspiring intellectual goodbye.