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Fwd: Call for chapter proposals: Routledge Handbook of Language and Mind Engineering (by Dec 31)

The Routledge Handbook of Language and Mind Engineering Edited by Chris Shei and James Schnell

Call for chapter proposals The term mind engineering used in this handbook is meant to replace brainwashing as a new concept and protocol of mind work that integrates language, media and technology in a highly sophisticated fashion to manipulate the victim’s perception of reality, indoctrinate beliefs and prime for action. Brainwashing, according to Cambridge Dictionary, means ‘to make someone believe something by repeatedly telling them that it is true and preventing any other information from reaching them’. Brainwashing, as traditionally conceived, causes a reduction of subject’s ability to think critically and independently and a fossilisation in their value and belief systems. Mind engineering subsumes this understanding but emphasize the ‘stealth’, ‘seamlessness’ and ‘gratification’ aspects of mind work. Britannica’s definition of brainwashing as ‘technique designed to manipulate human thought or action against the desire, will, or knowledge of the individual’ is no longer tenable. As sole or key information provider in the ecosystem, the manipulator presents carefully prepared materials to the subject so that the suggested ideas or primed actions seem natural and desirable to the victim. Mind engineering as a fairly recent addition to English terminology has been used in different contexts, either with a positive connotation or in a literal and neutral sense. A corporate advertisement on the web claims: Through Mind Engineering you can gain the knowledge and skills that will enhance your performance as a leader in the workplace. Albus (1999) used the phrase ‘engineering of mind’ in a literal sense to refer to the construction of a ‘reference model architecture’ of the human mind through cognitive and neurosciences utilising AI technology. Elsewhere the term mind engineering can be easily associated with so-called ‘predictive technology’ used to manipulate and control user behaviour on social media. In this handbook, we aim to collect research on all cases of mind engineering from political campaigns to commercial applications, such as the mechanisms of China’s patriotic education, media censorship and Xinjiang internment camps, Brexit discourses, the financial elites and populist discourses of United States, and the prediction tools of YouTube and Facebook. The Routledge handbook of language and mind engineering aims to bring together some fifty essays on mind engineering works in today’s society with political, economic, cultural or other intentions. The handbook explores the anatomy of mind engineering technique by scrutinizing it from linguistic, media and technological perspectives including an extension to the psychological dimension, emphasizing the role played by language in the mind engineering mechanism. Proposals of chapters are solicitated in the following areas and broad topics, which are suggestive rather than definitive or exhaustive, in the form of a tentative chapter title and an abstract of no less than 300 words.


Political mind engineering

  • Patriotic education and nationalism

  • Propaganda, censorship, prosecution and murder

  • Political performance on mass media

  • Humiliation, threat, superiority, collective goods, world peace

Commercial mind engineering

  • Media advertisements

  • Email or phone scams

  • Social media and game addiction

  • Football club tactics

  • Economic nationalism

Mind engineering in other domains

  • Religious brainwashing

  • Gender inequality

  • Family and ethnic mind engineering

  • The rule of law

  • Culture as mind engineering tool

Linguistic aspect of mind engineering

  • Linguistic analysis of mind engineering publications

  • Analyzing patriotic and nationalistic discourse

  • A discourse analysis of authoritarian speeches

  • Sociolinguistic aspect of mind engineering

  • Psycholinguistics aspect of mind engineering

The use of media and technology in mind engineering

  • The role of media in legitimizing foreign policy

  • Algorithms used by social media to control user emotions and actions

  • WeChat / Weibo censoring methods in China

  • Control of Internet in authoritarian regimes

  • The use of AI in surveillance, detection, prediction and influencing decision-making

The psychological aspect of mind engineering

  • The malleability and manipulability of the human mind

  • The dark psychology of manipulation and control

  • The use of logical fallacies and outright deception in mind engineering

  • How smartphones take up mental space and affect cognitive capacity

  • Neuro-parasitology: parasites that can control the nervous system of the host and the mind

The counter measures of mind engineering

  • Temporal and spatial factors to alter an engineered mind from childhood

  • Characteristics of mind engineering victims and their possible origins

  • How to counteract mass implanted ideology and its manifestation on social media

  • How to ‘uneducate’ the victims of state-led implantation of nationalism

  • Principles and strategies to outwit AI technologies that monitor and control behaviours

  • How to control YouTube addiction and resist its influences

Please email your proposal with proposed chapter title, abstract and the name(s) and affiliation(s) of the proposed author(s) to both editors’ email addresses below: Dr Chris Shei: c-c.shei@swansea.ac.uk Dr Jim Schnell: james.schnell@fulbrightmail.org Deadline for submitting your chapter proposal: 31 December 2021 Deadline for submitting full article if accepted: 31 December 2022


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