3rd Name Research Meeting, October 2020 (Zoom meeting)

  • Datum:
  • Plats: Zoom Please contact Mirjam Schmuck to receive Zoom credentials: https://katalog.uu.se/empinfo/?id=N20-507
  • Föreläsare: Damaris Nübling, Mirjam Schmuck, Emilia Aldrin & Mirjam Schmidt-Jüngst
  • Kontaktperson: Damaris Nübling & Mirjam Schmuck
  • Seminarium

In March, our visiting professors Damaris Nübling och Mirjam Schmuck from Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz started the regular meetings of onomasticians and people interested in name studies at Uppsala University. In October they are inviting all researches and students interested in the field to the 3rd name research meeting.

Please note: Due to the rising cases of covid-19 in Uppsala and a new travel warning issued by the German government, the meeting will be once again organised remotely (Zoom-Meeting) Please contact Mirjam Schmuck to receive the Zoom credentials.

Focus will be on socio-onomastics and we are happy to announce Miriam Schmidt-Jüngst (Mainz) and Emilia Aldrin (Halmstad) as additional speakers. Please find the schedule below.

Tuesday, October 20th

14:00 – 16:00h
Damaris Nübling: Phonological degendering of first names.

Mirjam Schmuck: Un/naming gender: Unisex names.

16:15 – 17:00h
Emilia Aldrin: Inblickar i nätverket Nya trender i nordisk socioonomastik och ett projekt om namn och sociokulturell representation (live video presentation).

18:00 – ca. 19:00h
Miriam Schmidt-Jüngst: „Naming who I am“ – Trans Name Changes as Semiotic Claims to Selfhood.

Wednesday, October 21rst

14:00 – 17:00h: Doctoral Colloquium


Damaris Nübling: Phonological degendering of first names
Since the turn of the millennium we observe a dramatic change in the phonological material of first names in Germany. As there is a rather strict gender segregation regarding the naming of children (two separate inventories), newborns tend to get names which do not sound particularly female or male. In my talk, I will pay special attention to boy's names such as Luca, Jona and Noah.

Mirjam Schmuck: Un/naming gender: Unisex names
In the last decades, names such as Noa(h), Mika, Luca figured among the top lists of names for both girls and boys in several European countries. However, from a cross-cultural perspective, the partial overlap of name inventories is a marginal phenomenon. In fact, “unisex names” hardly ever reach a higher level of ambiguity, i.e. a nearly even distribution among both genders. Evidence is drawn from English, German, and Swedish data.

Miriam Schmidt-Jüngst: „Naming who I am“ – Trans Name Changes as Semiotic Claims to Selfhood
Name changes that occur in relation to a gender transition are often understood exclusively as markers of a change in the socially perceived gender. Even though the transition from the assigned gender at birth to one’s real gender is in these cases the cause of the name change, gender is by far not the only relevant social category when deciding on a new name. On the contrary, these name changes are used as an opportunity to express one’s belonging to social categories important to one’s identity, e.g. religious or regional affiliation, ethnicity or kinship. Similarly, the name change might be seen as a chance to onymically distance oneself from social connotations attached to the name given at birth that are perceived as not matching one’s identity. 

Based on material from a larger qualitative study on the name changes of transgender individuals in Germany I will argue in this talk that these name changes should not be described merely as a practice of doing gender but should rather be understood as multifaceted acts of doing difference and doing identity