This talk presents the results of a study on the intersections between migration, multilingual practices, and the creation of space. It does so by focusing on Italians who migrated to Tasmania, a group that has long been isolated from the rest of Italians in Australia. Using an ethnographic approach this research shows that when experiences of movement are recounted in interaction they bring about spaces of speech that are possible thanks to the articulation of local and transnational ‘centres’, which in turn are intertwined with a rich set of linguistic resources. These resources include code-choice, codeswitching, and intentional exposure of phonological variation, and are variously combined to allow the emergence of spaces for people to move through. Spaces of speech are thus situated interactional spaces where acts of (re)telling are related to centres as spatial resources through which not only social meaning is created but also location and locution are mutually constitutive.


Marco Santello is an applied linguist with research interests in bilingualism and multilingualism and is currently a Lecturer in Intercultural Competence at the University of Leeds, UK. He gained his BA at the University of Padua and his MA at the Catholic University of Milan. Subsequent to his graduation he lived in Norway, where he was involved with the Italian Culture Institute of Oslo, and then moved to Canada to work within the Italian community in Toronto. He completed his PhD at the University of Sydney, Australia, where he did both quantitative and qualitative research on advertising and bilingualism. Upon his return to Europe he worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Warwick where he did research on multilingualism in Australia. Dr Santello’s interests revolve around language and mobility, language and space, linguistic repertoires, pragmatics of bilingual speech and language attitudes. He is also involved in the study of the nexus of language, religious experience and the transnational. His work has appeared in a number of journals such as Applied Linguistics, International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism and Language in Society as well as volumes.