About us

The Southern African Linguistics and Applied Linguistics Society of Southern Africa (SALALS) is a scholarly society of linguists, applied linguists and language practitioners whose research foci are the languages and language practices of and in the Southern African region. As such, “Southern” here refers more to linguistic borders than geographic ones.

The numerous languages within the Society’s purview include:
Afrikaans, Bemba, ChiShona, Chichewa, Ciluba, Damara, English, French, German, isiNdebele, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Nama, Nyanja, Portuguese, San, Sepedi, Sesotho, Setswana, Sindebele,Siswati, Tshivenda, Xitsonga.

Established in 2018, the society is a result of the amalgamation of the former LSSA/LVSA (Linguistics Society of Southern Africa) and SAALA (Southern African Applied Linguistics Association). 

Organisational flow chart

History of the LSSA/LVSA

History of SAALA

Recorded history barely hints at the establishment of the Linguistics Association of Southern Africa (LSSA), but oral history would suggest that the Linguistic Society of Southern Africa was established in the 1960’s when a group of linguists initially congregated to foster research, and more especially the sharing of knowledge, of those with common, frequently overlapping, fields of interest.

The Southern African Applied Linguistics Association (SAALA) was established as a professional association of scholars interested in, and actively contributing to, the multidisciplinary field of applied linguistics. Founded in 1980, SAALA’s prime objectives were to promote research by means of an annual conference and workshops; through affiliation with other organisations with similar interests, and through facilitating the distribution and exchange of information.