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A Message to Our International Community

For two decades, the International Society for Language Studies, Inc., (ISLS) led global discourse as an interdisciplinary association of scholars who explored critical perspectives on language. Within these perspectives, language is understood as both shaping and being shaped by historical, political, social, and cultural contexts. Research on language from such perspectives had historically been marginalized as well as compartmentalized within artificially constructed academic disciplines. The primary purpose of ISLS was to bridge these arbitrary disciplinary territories and provide a forum for both theoretical and empirical research, from existing and emergent research methodologies, for exploring the relationships among language, power, discourses, and social practices.


Between 2003 and 2023, ISLS advanced this agenda through a number of accomplishments:


  • Twelve international conferences throughout the world and hosted on many university campuses.


  • Established an international journal, Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, published by Taylor & Francis, which remains in circulation.


  • Established a book series published in nine volumes, Readings in Language Studies, now published by Information Age Publishing.


  • Awarded travel grants and emerging scholars awards in support our network of scholars.


  • Launched and sustained the careers of graduate students, emerging academics, and established scholars.


Upon ceasing operations, ISLS awarded its remaining funds as a lead gift to the newly established Language Connects Foundation of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). This substantial monetary gift was awarded in memory of Paul Chamness Iida, past President of ISLS. The award will keep the mission of ISLS and Paul’s memory alive.


John L. Watzke, Ph.D.


"I cannot thank this organization enough for the opportunities you provided a new scholar in the field and the confidence you gave me to know that CDA/CDS is a worthy approach for scholars today. I am so grateful to all the volunteer work over the years. I hope to see you all in future conferences and wish you all the best"

Megan Strom

University of Wisconsin

"It has been an honor to be associated with ISLS through the years. I loved the conferences I‘ve attended and learned from. I wish everyone continued success in their future endeavors."


Janet L. Pierce, PhD 


"I would like to thank you and all the present and past board members for the selfless and important work they have done for the ISLS. I am one of the countless young scholars for whom the organization became a vital opportunity for building connections and sharing research. It is difficult to have to say good-bye to ISLS, but we understand that the additional pandemic pressures have been overwhelming for many individuals and organizations."

With gratitude and best wishes,


Yuliya Desyatova, PhD
SSHRC Scolar

"I have felt very sad and disappointed since I received the announcement that ISLS will be closed. At the same time, I sincerely appreciate all your effort and engagement in trying to keep ISLS contributing to and making a great impact on the academic world....  I have attended several conferences since 2005 in Montreal. The ISLS conferences have been my academic pacemaker and provided a safe and satisfying environment.... 

Thank you very much for everything. I just wanted to express my feeling of appreciation and mention how important ISLS has been in my life."


Chieko Mimura, Ed. D.Utsunomiya University


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