Book Announcement: Onomastics Between Sacred and Profane, ed. by Oliviu Felecan, Vernon Press

Vernon Press announces publication of the volume Onomastics Between Sacred and Profane, edited by Oliviu Felecan, part of the Vernon Series in Language and Linguistics. A free sample of the book is available as a PDF download, containing the Table of Contents, the Foreword, the list of Contributors, the Preface and the Indexes.

Religiously, God is the creator of everything seen and unseen; thus, one can ascribe to Him the names of His creation as well, at least in their primordial form. In the mentality of ancient Semitic peoples, naming a place or a person meant determining the role or fate of the named entity, as names were considered to be mysteriously connected with the reality they designated. Subsequently, God gave people the freedom to name persons, objects, and places. However, people carried out this act (precisely) in relation to the divinity, either by remaining devoted to the sacred or by growing estranged from it, an attitude that generated profane names. The sacred/profane dichotomy occurs in all the branches of onomastics, such as anthroponymy, toponymy, and ergonymy. It is circumscribed to complex and interdisciplinary analysis which does not rely on language sciences exclusively, but also on theology, ethnology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, anthropology, geography, history and other connected fields, as well as culture in general.

Despite the contributors’ cultural diversity (29 researchers from 16 countries – England, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Nigeria, Poland, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Spain, U.S.A., and Zimbabwe – on four continents) and their adherence to different religions and faiths, the studies in Onomastics between Sacred and Profane share a common goal that consist of the analysis of names that reveal a person’s identity and behavior, or the existence, configuration and symbolic nature of a place or an object.

If you would like to order a copy through the publisher,  you can get a 24% discount using coupon CFC7736DFEE at Vernon Press. You can also order this book on Amazon.

Book Announcement: The Political Life of Urban Streetscapes: Naming, Politics, and Place

The Political Life of Urban Streetscapes: Naming, Politics, and Place
Edited by Reuben Rose-Redwood, Derek Alderman, Maoz Azaryahu
2018 Routledge
334 pages | 18 B/W Illus.

Streetscapes are part of the taken-for-granted spaces of everyday urban life, yet they are also contested arenas in which struggles over identity, memory, and place shape the social production of urban space. This book examines the role that street naming has played in the political life of urban streetscapes in both historical and contemporary cities. The renaming of streets and remaking of urban commemorative landscapes have long been key strategies that different political regimes have employed to legitimize spatial assertions of sovereign authority, ideological hegemony, and symbolic power. Over the past few decades, a rich body of critical scholarship has explored the politics of urban toponymy, and the present collection brings together the works of geographers, anthropologists, historians, linguists, planners, and political scientists to examine the power of street naming as an urban place-making practice. Covering a wide range of case studies from cities in Europe, North America, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia, the contributions to this volume illustrate how the naming of streets has been instrumental to the reshaping of urban spatial imaginaries and the cultural politics of place.

ICONN4: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Onomastics available online

The Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Onomastics “Name and Naming” has been published online, as a downloadable PDF. It was edited by Oliviu Felecan.

The general topic was Sacred and Profane in Onomastics. The content is divided into the following categories:

Sacred and Profane in Anthroponymy
Sacred and Profane in Toponymy
Sacred and Profane in Names in Public Space (e.g., commercial names etc.)
Sacred and Profane in Literary Onomastics

Book publication: Namen und Geschlechter/Names and Genders

Namen und Geschlechter: Studien zum onymischen Un/doing Gender [Names and Genders: Studies on the Onymic Doing and Undoing of Gender], ed. Damaris Nübling and Stefan Hirschauer, University of Mainz, Germany. This volume will be published by De Gruyter in March 2018.

Personal names are a critical factor in establishing the division into two genders. The essays in this volume examine the gender impact of personal names from linguistic-onomastic, sociological, and historical viewpoints. They investigate, among others, informal names in close relationships, the naming of the unborn, renaming transsexuals, and German, Dutch, and Swedish unisex names.

The language of the volume is German. It will be available in hardback and ebook format.