Volume 12, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1878-9714
  • E-ISSN: 1878-9722
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This article analyses how perceptions of and approaches to teaching linguistically heterogeneous groups in mother tongue instruction (MTI) in Sweden impact on the development of plurilingual literacies in that context. Linguistic ethnographic data collected over 12 months in classrooms and schools where MTI takes place were thematically categorized and data from the most prominent category, heterogeneity, were further coded into the heteroglossic categories of multidiscursivity and multivoicedness (Todorov 1984). The continua of biliteracy provides an additional interpretative framework. Results show that heteroglossic discursive practices involving diverse linguistic repertoires are commonly reported on and observed in MTI classrooms, and are viewed both as a resource for and an obstacle to learning. These results contribute to discussions on organizational and pedagogical approaches that work with rather than against heteroglossia, through resourceful use of languages to enhance learning in MTI and potentially other subjects as well.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): heteroglossia; mother tongue instruction; plurilingual literacies; Sweden
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