Displacement, Language Maintenance and Identity

Sudanese refugees in Australia

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This monograph presents an ecological perspective to the study of language maintenance and shift in immigrant contexts. The ecology incorporates past, present and future and treats spatial and temporal dimensions as the main organizing frames in which everyday language use and identity development can be explored. The methods combine a quantitative domain-based sociolinguistic survey with discourse analytic approaches. The novel approach is valuable for fellow researchers working in interdisciplinary fields of language maintenance, language shift, multilingualism andlanguage planning in migration contexts. The ecological perspective adds to sociolinguistic theories of globalization and responds to current dynamics of translocality in modern immigrant contexts. The research presents language use and language planning efforts in the Sudanese community of Australia. Language, culture, race and ethnic identity are explored in unique sociolinguistic contexts using an emic research lens and giving voice to the participants.

Subjects: Sociolinguistics and Dialectology; Language policy; Bilingualism; Anthropological Linguistics

  • Affiliations: 1: University of New South Wales

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