In July, 2011, Aston University's Centre for Forensic Linguistics hosted the 10th Biennial Conference of The International Association of Forensic Linguists. The conference was attended by over 130 delegates from approximately 31 countries, and, as with previous conferences, represented the diverse range of topics related to forensic linguistics and the language of the law that makes our field so stimulating. This collection represents a selection of papers that were presented at the conference. Since its formation in 1994, The International Association of Forensic Linguists has continued to thrive and now, 18 years later, what was once an emerging field, "too scattered to justify one's naming of a subject area 'forensic linguistics'" (French & Coulthard, 1994: vii) has become an established subdiscipline of applied linguistics as evidenced through a range of introductions to the field (e.g., Coulthard & Johnson, 2007; Gibbons, 2003; Gibbons & Turell, 2008; Solan & Tiersma, 2005) and handbooks (e.g., Coulthard & Johnson, 2010; Tiersma & Solan, 2012), let alone a plethora of edited collections and monographs, far too many to single out only a representative few. We hope that this collection of papers will add to the growing wealth of literature and demonstrate the often creative ways in which members of our community have developed research methods and new perspectives for interpreting data.
What makes this collection of papers most exciting is the range of authors represented—from IAFL Presidents, past and present, established scholars, professionals and arguably most importantly, students. Our community stands out as a group of scholars, practitioners and professionals who take pride in sharing the details of our work and fostering our students in an effort to sustain our field and promote growth. It is in this spirit that we have produced this electronic version of conference proceedings, so that we have a written record of our tenth biennial conference.
The papers have been organised around five main themes: the discourse of forensic contexts, including the courtroom and beyond; linguistic investigation and evidence; language analysis for the determination of origin (LADO); the relationship between media reports and crime; and ethical and moral issues in forensic linguistics.