Language Management and Language Problems: Part I
  • ISSN 0957-6851
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9838
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A name is not merely a personal identifier but an object over which state and corporate bodies regard themselvesas having the right of control. In the modern state, ideologies of citizenship, ethnocentrism, colonialism, have long entailedthe manipulation of personal names. The married change-name is, among other things, a psychological act, an imprintingby society on the (bride-bridegroom) initiate’s consciousness. A newly-coined married name encodes newinformation about the man or woman. It connotes primarily that a new social relationship has occurred. A new name isa symbol of allegiance to a new person, a new nexus of relations, a starting-over. Fufu bessei is the practicein Japan of the retention of former surnames after marriage. Retention of the surname is a ruptus in traditionalsymbolic reference, a social and psychological discontinuity. A review of global practice regarding post-marriage namingreveals no uniformity but rather variation. At the same time, there appears to be many possible reasons why an individualdecides to change or not to change. Marriage name-change/name-retention thus comprise an ideological speech-act: alinguistic expression of a form of consciousness which sustains and legitimates a state of affairs or which, conversely,indicates rejection of particular practices and institutions.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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