David Block

Universitat de Lleida


I am ICREA Research Professor in Sociolinguistics in the Departament d'Anglès i Lingüística, Universitat de Lleida. There I am a member of the Cercle de Lingüística Aplicada. I am also Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences (UK); Visiting Professor at University College London, Institute of Education; and editor of the Routledge book series Political Economy and Applied Linguistics. I joined ICREA in September 2012 after 16 years at the University College London Institute of Education, where I was Professor of Languages in Education. Prior to that, I worked in Barcelona for 18 years as an English teacher in centres such as ESADE, and as a Lecturer in Applied Linguistics at the Universitat de Barcelona and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. I completed my PhD in Applied Linguistics at the University Lancaster (UK) in 1995.  

Research interests

I have published articles, chapters and books on a variety of topics in applied linguistics, including second language identities, bi/multilingualism and language in society. At present, I am incorporating into my work past and present thinking in political economy (from Smith and Marx to Piketty and Harvey), as I develop conceptual frameworks for understanding globalization, internationalisation, multiculturalism, bi/multilingualism, identity and social movements. In my most recent work I have focussed on neoliberalism as the dominant ideology/rationality in contemporary societies, inequality in 21st century societies, and class as a key dimension of being in the world. This orientation is reflected in three books, Neoliberalism and Applied Linguistics (Routledge, 2012; co-authored, with John Gray and Marnie Holborow), Social Class in Applied Linguistics (Routledge, 2014) and Political Economy in Sociolinguistics (Bloomsbury, 2018), as well as  numerous articles and chapters appearing in 2017, 2018 and 2019. I am currenlty working on a book entitled Post-truth, Ignorance and Corrupt Discourses for Palgrave Macmillan. 

Selected publications

- Block D 2017, 'Political economy in applied linguistics research', Language Teaching, vol. 50, no. 1, pp 32-64.

- Block D 2017, 'Discourses in conflict: resource inequality, class warfare and home repossessions', Social Semiotics, 27, 3, 255 - 264.

- Block D 2017, 'Migration, language and social class', in Canagarajah S (ed) Routledge handbook on migration and language, Routledge, London, pp. 133-148.

- Block D 2017, 'Researching language and social class in education', in King K & Lai YJ (eds) Research methods. Encyclopedia of language and education, Volume 10, 3rd edition, Springer, New York, pp. 159-169.

- Block D 2017, 'Journey to the centre of language teacher identity', in G. Barkhuizen (ed.) Reflections on language teacher identity research, Routledge, London, pp. 31-36.

- Block D 2017, 'Positioning theory and life-story interviews: discursive fields, gaze and resistance', In Bagga-Gupta S, Lyngvaer Hansen A & Feilberg J (eds) Identity revisited and reimagined. Empirical and theoretical contributions on embodied communication across time and space. Berlin: Springer, pp. 25-40.

Selected research activities

* Co-PI, MINECO Project FFI2016-76383-P, 2016-2019: Towards an empirical assessment of the impact of English-medium instruction at university: language learning, disciplinary knowledge and academic identities(ASSEMID)

* Post-doc tutor, Juan de la Cierva. IJCI-2015-25191, 2017-2019: Victor Corona. Exploring the class and race-based subjectivities of the children of immigrants in Catalonia

* 11 conference papers given in 2017

* Finished the book Political Economy in Sociolinguistics: Neoliberalism, Inequality and Social Class for Bloomsbury (to appear in January 2018)

* Ongoing PhD supervision (5 students)

* Editor, Routledge book series Language, Society and Political Economy

* Associate Editor, Applied Linguistics Review

* Reviewing academic journal articles, grant proposals and book proposals