Language Planning and Varieties of (Modern Standard) Chinese
  • ISSN 0957-6851
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9838
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


Massive population movement across dialectal boundaries in contemporary China leads to increasing bilingualism in Putonghua (Standard Chinese) and regional dialects. This study investigates the functional distribution of Putonghua and Cantonese as spoken by immigrant residents in Guangdong Province. Results from questionnaire surveys in Guangzhou and Shenzhen reveal different patterns of Putonghua-dialect bilingualism in the two cities. For immigrants in Guangzhou, Putonghua and the local dialect (Cantonese) have comparable strength and functions, whereas in Shenzhen, Putonghua serves as the dominant language. To account for the differences between Guangzhou and Shenzhen, we argue that demographic structure is an important factor regulating the standard-dialect relationship in the urban communities of China. We propose that social network features correlate with the respective instrumental and integrative values of the languages or dialects in contact. This research provides insights into the dynamic interaction between the standard language and dialects in multilingual societies that are experiencing profound social changes.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...

  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): bilingualism; Cantonese; immigrants; Putonghua
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error