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Mission and Strategy
Updated: 11 March 2015

FILLM seeks to develop and encourage the scholarly study of modern and medieval languages and literatures. This aim is pursued through forms of international scholarly cooperation which bring together detailed research on particular topics with themes and approaches of global relevance and general application. In practical terms, FILLM
  • organizes a triennial International Congress and other scholarly gatherings;
  • publishes works of scholarship;
  • draws attention to outstanding achievement in linguistic and literary scholarship from all over the world;
  • actively lobbies for the international maintenance and improvement of education and research in the field of languages and literatures;
  • and maintains a website and newsletter as a discussion forum for scholars in the field of languages and literatures world-wide.

At present FILLM’s overall strategy is to further increase its outreach, impact and usefulness.


In order to realize this aim, special attention is being paid to four lines of approach in particular:

Legitimating the discipline

In a time when funding for research and education in languages and literatures is under serious threat, FILLM is concerned to promote dialogue between scholars with many different backgrounds. This is seen as the best way to promote the development of a shared frame of reference, which will in turn make it easier to legitimate the discipline in the eyes of those who hold governmental and university purse-strings. Drawing strength and authority, not only from its status as the world’s ceiling organization for languages and literatures, but also from this active internal discussion, FILLM will be playing an increasingly important role in lobbying the relevant bodies and individuals on behalf of particular programmes of research and education which are at risk. As a way of gathering information on this front and consolidating efforts of protest,  FILLM is making its own website a channel for news about threatened cuts and closures.

Publishing drive

FILLM is aiming to encourage the publication of works of linguistic and literary scholarship in which detailed cutting-edge research is related to issues of major global concern, and which can therefore interest a very broad audience. This goal can be seen as another aspect of the drive to legitimate the discipline, in that it tends to discourage narrow provincialism or de-humanizing overspecialization. With this in view, FILLM has recently launched its own book series, FILLM Studies in Languages and Literatures. (For further information, see Publications.)


Membership drive


As a way of keeping pace with developments in the world of contemporary scholarship, FILLM has recently amended its Constitution so as to recognize that many of the most important international associations for literary and linguistic scholarship are smaller and more specialized than was traditionally the case. Especially since the synergies between their kind of specialization and FILLM’s traditionally “generalist” perspective could be especially fruitful, FILLM is now actively inviting them to consider the benefits of membership. 
Such invitations are also being directed to associations developing international links from all quarters of the globe, and to international associations based in Europe, which under FILLM’s amended Constitution are now no less eligible for membership of FILLM than international associations from any other region of the world. (For further information, see Membership.)

Communicational policy

FILLM sees communication as the key to everything it is hoping to achieve, and has accordingly updated its communicational policy so as to take greater advantage of the digital media. A recent amendment to the Constitution established the post of Communications Officer. The Communications Officer is responsible for FILLM's webpage and Newsletter.


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