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The Democratic Language Policy of Plurilingual Code-switching: A Comparative Study across Minority Language Communities

Anna Franca Plastina ; Università della Calabria
Dino Selvaggi ; Università della Calabria

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 531 Kb

str. 181-195

preuzimanja: 449



The complex linguistic scenario in present-day Italy is still not fully acknowledged by an appropriate provision of democratic language policies promoting minority languages alongside Italian as the official language of the country. Nevertheless, the concept of language policy cannot be restricted to institutional provisions alone as it also encompasses the language practices and beliefs of all the minority communities present on the national territory. This key aspect allows for a major democratization of language policy and for its promotion at grassroots level. This paper advocates the importance of conducting research on the specific language practice of plurilingual code-switching (PCS) across standard and non-standard varieties, and also on disclosing related beliefs held by minority community members. In this light, an empirical survey was conducted across three minority communities in the southern Italian region of Calabria, namely, Albanian, Occitan, and Filipino. Data was collected on sample informants’ attitudes towards PCS and on their acceptability judgments, based on the criteria of the integrated model of PCS we propose. Findings from the comparative analysis generally highlight positive attitudes towards PCS, although noticeable differences in terms of language practices and beliefs were found across the three communities. The study thus contributes to highlighting the importance of adopting a bottom-up approach to better promote democratic language policies as it discloses the policies of single communities, which can inform institutional language policymakers.

Ključne riječi

plurilingual code-switching; democratic language policies; attitudes; acceptability judgements

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