Discourses on Language and Integration
Critical perspectives on language testing regimes in Europe
One of the most pressing issues in contemporary European societies is the need to promote integration and social inclusion in the context of rapidly increasing migration. A particular challenge confronting national governments is how to accommodate speakers of an ever-increasing number of languages within what in most cases are still perceived as monolingual indigenous populations. This has given rise to public debates in many countries on controversial policies imposing a requirement of competence in a ‘national’ language and culture as a condition for acquiring citizenship. However, these debates are frequently conducted almost entirely at a national level within each state, with little if any attention paid to the broader European context. At the same time, further EU enlargement and the ongoing rise in the rate of migration into and across Europe suggest that the salience of these issues is likely to continue to grow. This volume offers a critical analysis of these debates and emerging discourses on integration and challenges the assumptions underlying the new ‘language testing regimes’.