Staff Profile: Dr Thomas Dickins
Dickins’s background is in Russian and Czech language and
literature. He teaches on a wide range of modules, and has
been Course Leader for Linguistics for several years. His
current research interests relate primarily to applied linguistics:
in particular, Czech lexicology, language variation and change,
linguistic purism and loanwords, and language and political
- PhD (by published work): ‘Selected aspects of language contact
in the case of Czech, with a particular focus on lexical borrowing
and changing attitudes to the self and others’, University of
- PGCE: Qualified to teach Russian, French and English, (awarded
Wortley Year Prize for theory of education), University of
Nottingham, School of Education, 1986
- MA (by research): ‘Critical responses to Socialist Realism in
Czech literature: 1958–
- 1969. A study of selected works
by Josef Škvorecký, Bohumil Hrabal and Milan Kundera’,University of
- BA (Hons): Russian Studies (with 3-year French
Subsidiary), University of Leeds,1981
Current Subjects Lectured and Other University Activities
- Language in Use (Level 4)
- Language and Society (Level 5)
- Research Methods for English Language, Linguistics and TESOL
- Language Variation and Change (Level 6)
- Russian Language (All levels)
- Writing skills (All levels)
Member of various University committees
(including the Student Management Board, the Programme Management
Board and the School Research Committee)
Articles, Book Chapters etc.
- ‘Attitudes to the notion of “foreign”, as reflected in the
Czech lexicon since the end of the nineteenth century’, in
Montserrat Cots, Pere Gifra-Adroher & Glyn Hambrook
(editors), Interrogating Gazes: Comparative Critical Views on
the Representation of Foreignness and Otherness (Bern, Berlin,
Brussels, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Vienna: Peter Laing,
2013), pp. 101-109.
- ‘Historical “signposts” and other temporal indicators in the
Czech lexicon’, The Slavonic and East European Review 90
(4), 2012, pp. 601–41.
- ‘The Czech-speaking lands, their peoples and contact
communities: titles, names and ethnonyms’, The Slavonic and
East European Review 89 (3), 2011, pp. 401–454.
- Attitudes to lexical borrowing in the Czech Republic
(Liberec: Nakladatelství Bor, 2009).
- ‘Češi a slovenština’, Naše společnost 7 (1), 2009, pp.
- ‘Postoje k výpůjčkám v soudobé češtině’, Naše
společnost 6 (1), 2008, pp. 14–28.
- ‘The legacy and limitations of Czech purism’,
Slavonica 13 (2), 2007, pp. 113–33.
- ‘Russian and Soviet loanwords and calques in the Czech lexicon
since the beginning of the twentieth century’, The
Slavonic and East European Review 84 (4), 2006, pp.
- ‘Representations of Russian and Soviet society in standard
Czech reference dictionaries’, Central Europe 2 (2), 2004,
- ‘Gender differentiation and the asymmetrical use of animate
nouns in contemporary Czech’, The Slavonic and East European
Review 79 (2), 2001, pp. 212–47.
- ‘Changing ideologies in Slovník jazyka českého
(1937–52)’, Slavonica 7 (1), 2000, pp. 24–74.
- ‘Reflections of ideology in Slovník jazyka českého
(1946-52)’, in Robert Pynsent (editor), The Phoney Peace:
Central European Politics and Culture, 1945–1949
(London: London University Press, 2000), pp. 359–84.
- ‘Prepositional vocalization in contemporary Czech’, The
Slavonic and East European Review 76 (2), 1998, pp.
- ‘Linguistic varieties in Czech: problems of the spoken
language’, Slavonica 1 (2), 1995, pp. 20 46. Reprinted
(with amendments): Ročenka Kruhu moderních
filologů 21, 1997, pp. 58–87.
Teaching and Learning Materials
- (with Irina Moore), S azov (Russian from
Scratch), University of Wolverhampton, 2004 A4, comb-bound:
536 pp. (Online version available at http://www.gefix.net/sazov/)
- Spoken Czech: Situational Dialogues for Intermediate Level
Students (13 scenes on video with accompanying textbook,
including an introductory chapter: ‘Notes on the development of the
literary language and on different linguistic registers in Czech’)
, University of Wolverhampton, 1993.
- Tomasz Kamusella, The Politics of Language and
Nationalism in Modern Central Europe (Basingstoke,
New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), in The Slavonic
and East European Review 91 (4), 2013.
- James Wilson, Moravians in Prague. A
Sociolinguistic Study of Dialect Contact
in the Czech Republic (Frankfurt am Main:
Peter Lang, 2010), in The Slavonic and East
European Review 89 (3), 2011.
- Lubomír Štrougal, Paměti a
úvahy [Memoirs and
Reflections] (Prague: Epocha, 2009) in The
Slavonic and East European Review 89 (2), 2011.
- (with Eric Dickins), Jenny Carl & Patrick Stevenson (eds),
Language, Discourse and
Identity in Central Europe. The German Language in a Multilingual
Space (Houndsmill, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan,
2009), in Slovo a slovesnost 71 (2), 2011.
- Tora Hedin, Changing Identities: Language Variation
on Czech Television (Stockholm: Stockholm University
Press, 2005), in The Slavonic and East European
Review 85 (4), 2007.
- James Naughton, Colloquial Czech,
in Irish Slavonic Studies 1, 2000.
- Kevin Hannan, Borders of Language and Identity in
Teschen Silesia, in Czech Language
News 9, 1997.
- Robert B. Pynsent, Questions of Identity: Czech and
Slovak Ideas of Nationality and
Personality, in Irish Slavonic Studies 1,
- František Čermák, Jan Holub, Jiří Hronek, Milan Šára &
David Short, A multi-level
course for advanced Czech learners (2
Vols), in The Slavonic and East European Review
76 (2), 1995.
- Milena Kelly, Czech for You, in
Czech Language News 2, 1994.
- 4 October 2013 Embassy of the Czech Republic
(London), Current Trends in Czech Studies IV:
“Not Such a Faraway Country?”: ‘The Language of the
- 9 September 2011 Universitat Pompeu Fabria (Barcelona),
Xenographies 2 conference: ‘Attitudes to the notion of
“foreign” in The Czech-speaking lands, as reflected in the post
- 8–10 September 2011 Member of Scientific Committee: Universitat
Pompeu Fabria(Barcelona), Xenographies 2 conference
- 1 July 2011 New Research in LSSC (University of
Wolverhampton): ‘Historical “signposts” and other temporal
indicators in the Czech lexicon since the Great War’
- 2 July 2010 New Research in LSSC (University of
Wolverhampton): ‘Czech perceptions of themselves and other peoples,
as reflected in naming practices’
- 2 July 2009 Co-organizer of conference: New Research in
HLSS (University of Wolverhampton)
- 13 September 2008 University of Essex, Linguistics
Association of Great Britain, peer-reviewed conference paper:
‘The Czechs and the Slovak language’ (themed session on
Central and East European sociolinguistics)
- 24 May 2006 Nottingham Trent University, Invited paper:
‘Attitudes to loan words in contemporary Czech’
- 23–24 June 2005 University of Wolverhampton, HAGRI–ETAT
Post-communism conference: Chair of two panels
- 11 January 2003 Embassy of the Czech Republic, ‘New Ideas and
Trends in the Study of Czech Culture, Language, and Literature’:
Discussant for paper on changes in the Czech language
- 31 July 2000 Finnish Institute for Russian and East European
Studies, Tampere, Finland, VI ICSEES Congress: ‘The
asymmetrical use of animate nouns in Czech’ (Organizer of
international, multi-disciplinary panel: ‘Gender and representation
in the Czech context’)
- 14 June 2000 University of Wolverhampton, Research Seminar:
‘Representations of Czechoslovakia in Slovník jazyka
- 3 April 2000 Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge,
BASEES Annual Conference: Chair for panel on Russian
- 1 April 2000 Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge,
BASEES Annual Conference: ‘Russian and Soviet referents in the
- 1999 University of Wolverhampton, New Slavonic
Linguistics Seminar: ‘Gender differentiation in the
Czech dictionary’ (Co-organizer of conference with Neil Bermel,
University of Sheffield)
- 1999 University of Wolverhampton, Russian and East European
Centre, Research Seminar: ‘Sex in Czech? Gender differentiation and
the asymmetrical use of animate nouns in Slovník spisovné
češtiny pro školu a veřejnost’
- 1998 Centre for the Study of Central Europe, School of Slavonic
and East European Studies, University of London, Another
Transition: Central Europe 1945–1949: ‘Reflections of
ideological values in Czech-Czech dictionaries’
- 1996 Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge, BASEES
Annual Conference: ‘Russian–Czech cross-foreign language
- 1995 Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of
Sciences, V World Congress for Central and East
European Studies: Discussant for panel on aspects of
contemporary Czech culture
- 1994 Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge, BASEES
Annual Conference: ‘Linguistic registers in Czech: problems of the
- 1990 Wolverhampton
Polytechnic, occasional seminar paper: ‘Multilingualism in Soviet
Other Relevant Activities
- 2013– Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies, University of
Sheffield, BA (Hons) and MA degree examinations in Russian Studies
- 2004–2009 Department of Languages, Coventry Business School,
University of Coventry, BA (Hons) degree examinations in
- 2004–2008 Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies,
University of Sheffield, BA (Hons) and MA degree examinations in
Russian Studies (Czech)
- 1988–2003 The Centre for Modern Languages, University of
Birmingham, B.Eng., M.Eng. (etc.) degree examinations
- 1998–2003 CREES, University of Birmingham, BA (Hons) and MA
degree examinations in Russian
- 1998–2003 University of Durham, BA (Hons) and MA degree
examinations in Czech
- 1996–1999 University of Leeds, BA (Hons) degree examinations in
- 1995–1997 European Business School (Russian language, level
- 1995–1996 University of Birmingham, BA (Hons) degree
examinations in Russian (Czech)
Membership of Editorial Board
- January 2009 – Member of the editorial board of Czech language
journal, Studie z aplikované lingvistiky (Studies in
Applied Linguistics), published by the Philosophical Faculty
of Charles University (Prague)