El idioma, construcción social e ideológica de la lengua / Language, social and ideological construction of the tongue

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It is useful to preserve the dichotomy between Spanish terms lengua and idioma as this will enable us to understand some of the old controversial arguments such as the existence of an Argentinian idioma, the perception of historic languages like Asturiano or Aragonés as being vulgar dialects, or the acknowledgement of an idioma valenciano which is different from the idioma catalán. While the term lengua refers to a linguistic system, the term idioma works as a positive image for the representation of one particular community. This is an intuitive image, which does not have much in common with a linguistic analysis, but rather is deeply rooted in ideological and affective reasons. Therefore, the idioma is built around a form of “folk” thinking, in which the linguists participate as well.


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