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Multilingualism and Social Inclusion



This is a thematic issue on the relation between multilingualism and social inclusion. Due to globalization, Europeanization, supranational and transnational regulations linguistic diversity and multilingualism are on the rise. Migration and old and new forms of mobility play an important role in these processes. As a consequence, English as the only global language is spreading around the world, including Europe and the European Union. Social and linguistic inclusion was accounted for in the pre-globalization age by the nation-state ideology implementing the ‘one nation-one people-one language’ doctrine into practice. This lead to forced linguistic assimilation and the elimination of cultural and linguistic heritage. Now, in the present age of globalization, linguistic diversity at the national state level has been recognized and multilingual states have been developing where all types of languages can be used in governance and daily life protected by a legal framework. This does not mean that there is full equality of languages. This carries over to the fair and just social inclusion of the speakers of these weaker, dominated languages as well. There is always a power question related to multilingualism. The ten case studies in this thematic issue elaborate on the relation between multilingualism and social inclusion. The articles in this issue refer to this topic in connection with different spaces, including the city, the island, and the globe; in connection with different groups, like Roma in the former Soviet-Union and ethnic Albanians in Macedonia; in connection with migration and mobility of Nordic pensioners to the south of Europe, and language education in Scotland; and finally in connection with bilingual education in Austria and Estonia as examples of successful practices including multilingualism under one and the same school roof.
Social Inclusion (ISSN: 2183–2803)
2017, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 1–4
DOI: 10.17645/si.v5i4.1286
Multilingualism and Social Inclusion
László Marácz 1,2,* and Silvia Adamo 3
1Faculty of Humanities, University of Amsterdam, 1012 CX Amsterdam, The Netherlands; E-Mail:
2Department of International Relations, Gumilyov Eurasian National University, 010000 Astana, Kazakhstan
3Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen, 2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark; E-Mail:
* Corresponding author
Submitted: 25 November 2017 | Published: 22 December 2017
This is a thematic issue on the relation between multilingualism and social inclusion. Due to globalization, Europeanization,
supranational and transnational regulations linguistic diversity and multilingualism are on the rise. Migration and old and
new forms of mobility play an important role in these processes. As a consequence, English as the only global language is
spreading around the world, including Europe and the European Union. Social and linguistic inclusion was accounted for in
the pre-globalization age by the nation-state ideology implementing the ‘one nation-one people-one language’ doctrine
into practice. This lead to forced linguistic assimilation and the elimination of cultural and linguistic heritage. Now, in the
present age of globalization, linguistic diversity at the national state level has been recognized and multilingual states have
been developing where all types of languages can be used in governance and daily life protected by a legal framework. This
does not mean that there is full equality of languages. This carries over to the fair and just social inclusion of the speakers
of these weaker, dominated languages as well. There is always a power question related to multilingualism. The ten case
studies in this thematic issue elaborate on the relation between multilingualism and social inclusion. The articles in this
issue refer to this topic in connection with different spaces, including the city, the island, and the globe; in connection with
different groups, like Roma in the former Soviet-Union and ethnic Albanians in Macedonia; in connection with migration
and mobility of Nordic pensioners to the south of Europe, and language education in Scotland; and finally in connection
with bilingual education in Austria and Estonia as examples of successful practices including multilingualism under one
and the same school roof.
communication; education; English; Esperanto; language; minorities; multilingualism; global languages; linguistic spaces;
social inclusion
This editorial is part of the issue “Multilingualism and Social Inclusion”, edited by László Marácz (University of Amster-
dam, The Netherlands/Gumilyov Eurasian National University, Kazakhstan) and Silvia Adamo (University of Copenhagen,
© 2017 by the authors; licensee Cogitatio (Lisbon, Portugal). This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribu-
tion 4.0 International License (CC BY).
1. Introduction
Linguistically diverse or multilingual societies are increas-
ing worldwide. This has mainly to do with processes of
globalization and Europeanization. Universal norms and
standards in order to protect linguistic and cultural iden-
tity are spreading around the globe. In parallel, the tra-
ditional nation-state regime cultivating the ‘one nation-
one people-one language ideology’ is weakening, creat-
ing room for the celebration of linguistic diversity; and
there is a proliferation of federal, multilingual states
which recognize more than one official language, i.e., the
language of the majority as the official language for com-
munication in governance, the public sphere and educa-
tion. The European Union (EU) now recognizing 24 offi-
cial languages is such new federal-type of political con-
Social Inclusion, 2017, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 1–4 1
stellation. Further, the proliferation of multilingualism is
boosted by all forms of mobility, where mobility is un-
derstood as physical migration or new forms of virtual
mobility connected to digital networks. Mobility in this
sense supports the linguistic and transnational identity
of migrants bringing with them new languages that can
be called mobile minority languages in reference to tradi-
tional minority languages that have a territorial binding
in most cases. These migrants speaking unique heritage
languages cannot be integrated via linguistic assimilation
into the host society. Finally, English is on the rise as a
global lingua franca and it is considered that proficiency
in English is a prerequisite for a just world. The idea is
that more English leads to more social inclusion.
The relation between linguistic diversity and social in-
clusion is rather complex, however. A good example is
the EU. Social and linguistic inclusion is hampered by the
fact that although linguistic diversity is generally seen as
a positive asset and linguistic rights are on the agenda of
policy making in practice we have to do with language
hierarchies which imply the exclusion of languages and
we hasten to add quite often the social exclusion of their
speakers instead of inclusion. Linguistic barriers may also
add to the exclusion of non-native speakers in a host
state labour market (Adamo, 2018).
Due to the 24 official languages, linguistic diversity in
Brussels is hard to manage, however. Hence, the distinc-
tion between “official” versus “working” language has
become relevant, and this is practically used as a solution
for the language issue in the Brussels institutions. The
difference between official and working languages is de-
fined in article 6 of the language regulation 1/1958: the
institutions are allowed to freely choose their own lan-
guage regime. The European Commission acknowledges
three working languages, namely English, which is used
the most, French and German. The latter is used substan-
tially less frequently than the other two. Another exam-
ple of article 6 is the fact that of the 15 Directorate Gen-
erals (DGs) only three use the 24 official languages on
their website, including Employment, Social Affairs and
Inclusion, Enterprise and Industry, and Justice. All other
DGs use a reduced or a monolingual regime consisting of
English only.
There are voices to abolish language regulation
1/1958 altogether, due to the fact that an equal treat-
ment of official and working languages is not possible.
The main argument is that the democratic language
regime of the EU will hamper an efficient functioning of
its institutions. Moreover, the reduction of the number
of official languages is underpinned by the fact that inter-
national English functions practically as a lingua franca
in Brussels and European educational recommendations
for language teaching favour the learning of English.
Hence, monolingualism, i.e., the use of global English is
more often practice in the Brussels’ institutions. Never-
theless, not only global English will hamper the equality
of languages in Brussels it will also render almost impos-
sible the participation of non-speakers of English in the
Europeanisation project. This leads to social exclusion in-
stead of social inclusion.
It is true that traditional minority languages have re-
ceived more legal recognition in recent decades. Euro-
pean territorial languages are protected by several con-
ventions under the auspice of the Council of Europe that
is in close cooperation with the EU. The use of these
languages in European national states where the official
language of the state is the majority language is guaran-
teed by international and European legal treaties, like the
Framework Convention for the Protection of National Mi-
norities signed on 1 February 1995 in Strasbourg and the
European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages
adopted on 5 November 1992. Observe that in these
cases, there is no full equality between the majority
and minority languages leading to linguistic hegemony
of the majority language. This situation of inequality is
characterized by linguistic asymmetries, subordination,
and threshold restrictions for the use of the weaker lan-
guage. This carries over to the native speakers of these
languages. Hence, they might be excluded because they
speak a minority language. The traditional territorial lan-
guages are still in a better position than mobile minor-
ity languages that have received hardly any recognition
in the European linguistic space. As Nagy (2015) rightly
points out this has to do with power, and officially rec-
ognized languages are the languages of power indicating
which group is dominating the political arena. Therefore,
language policy projects, like ‘MIME’ that is sponsored
by the European Commission FP7-program should find
an optimal equilibrium between mobility and social in-
clusion (Grin, Marácz, Pokorn, & Kraus, 2014).
This thematic issue will offer ten case studies on the
relation between multilingualism and social inclusion,
and will reflect on the themes discussed above. The arti-
cles address also topics and countries that are far beyond
the scope of the EU only. Issues having to do with linguis-
tic diversity and multilingualism play an important role
on a global scale. The articles target themes as multilin-
gualism in different spaces, including the city, island and
the globe. Esperanto might challenge the only global lin-
gua franca (i.e., English) as a neutral, artificial alternative.
The articles also cover language as a source of conflict
and an ethno-identity marker of minorities, like Roma
in the former Soviet-Union and Albanians in Macedonia;
the effects of mobility and migration on multilingual com-
munication in the case of Northern European pensioners
in the south of Europe and education in Scotland; and
bilingual education in Austria and Estonia as illustrative
cases of social inclusion under one and the same but lin-
guistically diverse school roof.
2. Multilingualism in Different Spaces
In their article, Yaron Matras and Alex Robertson (2017)
focus on the language and social policies employed in
a British university setting. Describing the work carried
out by the research unit Multilingual Manchester (MLM),
Social Inclusion, 2017, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 1–4 2
the authors illustrate how initiatives for awareness of
language diversity can sustain a development towards a
more inclusive society. The article shows how the activi-
ties proposed in a model of participatory research such
as MLM can pave the way towards an appreciation of lan-
guage diversity as a vital element of social inclusion.
Through an examination of the linguistic landscape
of Manila during a protest march in November 2016, Jen-
nifer Monje (2017) uses data such as mobile posters, ban-
ners, t-shirts, etc., to map the linguistic composition and
‘ethnolinguistic vitality’ of the city. By analyzing these
mobile and unfixed linguistic expressions, the article ex-
plores the city of Manila’s multilingual nature and at the
same time, the strategies that can be used for displaying
dissent through linguistic devices.
The article by Herman Bröring and Eric Mijts (2017)
explores the language practices in postcolonial small is-
land states, in the specific case study Aruba, and their
relation of dependency on former colonizer states’ lan-
guage regime. The starting point of the analysis fo-
cuses on the limited protection offered by international
treaties to creole languages spoken by the majority of
the inhabitants of the former colonial island. From there
the authors proceed to analyse how the influence of
Dutch language in governance, judiciary, and education
currently affects the Aruba legislation. In this view, the
language planning and policy employed in Aruba does
not support a ‘linguistically inclusive society’ where the
island’s population can be represented.
Federico Gobbo’s (2017) contribution describes and
contextualizes the creation and development of Es-
peranto. Acclaimed as a true example of lingua franca,
the evolution of Esperanto is nuanced in Gobbo’s exposi-
tion by exposing the commitment of Esperanto activists
to particular sets of beliefs and ‘programs for changing
the world’. By presenting and discussing the history and
narratives of Esperanto, the author also proposes a re-
newed assessment of the predominant position of En-
glish as the current lingua franca of the world.
3. Multilingualism and Minorities
The article by Elena Marushiakova and Vesselin Popov
(2017) introduces us to the developments in the poli-
tics of multilingualism and educational policies for Roma
children in the Soviet Union. Formerly known as ‘gypsy
schools’, these institutions provided instruction in their
Romani mother tongue, and thanks also to specially
trained Roma teachers, high levels of literacy were
achieved in the Roma communities. After the closing of
these special schools in 1938, the authors describe a lack
of multilingual awareness in the subsequent move to in-
clude Roma children into mainstream schools. Individ-
ual elements of multilingualism and educational policies
specifically targeting Roma children have been reintro-
duced only in a few countries after the collapse of the
communist regimes in Eastern Europe. The article also
mentions the lack of interest of Roma people in accept-
ing a mother tongue based multilingual education, in re-
buttal of the positive results of Roma education in the
Soviet Union.
The article by Renata Treneska-Deskoska (2017) sets
the frame around the question of why and how states
ought to accomodate linguistic diversity. The author
presents the context of Macedonia, with its ethno-
linguistic communities that have challenged the state’s
organisation since its 1991 independence. Adopting a
‘promotional approach’, Macedonia has granted linguis-
tic rights to minorities also by means of constitutional
change, which introduced Albanian as an official lan-
guage alongside Macedonian. The article examines the
complex relationship between language policies and
‘ethnic mistrust’ and the potential and limits of legisla-
tion in accomodating the tensions among the two.
4. Multilingualism and Migration
In their contribution, Per Gustafson and Ann Elisabeth
Laksfoss Cardozo (2017) analyze the multilingual context
in which international retirees live, in their ‘search for
a better quality of life’. Taking as a case study Scandi-
navian (Norwegian and Swedish) retirees residing in the
province of Alicante, Spain, the authors confront issues
of social, cultural, and linguistic inclusion that are present
in modern international retirement by focusing espe-
cially on the issue of language. After exploring the par-
ticular linguistic landscape of Alicante and the retirees’
linguistic practices, the authors discuss how this partic-
ular kind of migration movement affects the conditions
for social inclusion, as well as our understanding of the
very concept.
In the article by Róisín McKelvey (2017), we have the
opportunity to explore a relatively unknown context of
multilingualism found in the educational system of Scot-
land. The increased linguistic diversity of the country, as in
the wider UK context, has spurred a demand for language
policies and multilingual public services. From this start-
ing point, the article evaluates the legal instruments and
policies promoting language learning and multilingualism,
considering also the challenges to their implementation
in an optic of inclusion. The conclusions highlight the ten-
sion between goals of inclusion and the increased mobil-
ity and multilingual demographics in Scotland.
5. Minority Languages
The article by Ulrike Jessner and Kerstin Mayr-Keiler
(2017) examines the context of language choice and lan-
guage use in children attending bilingual and multilingual
schools in Austria. By means of a sociolinguistic analysis
and employing empirical data, the article explores how
children utilise socio-contextual information in order to
inform their language choice and language use. The anal-
ysis concludes by evaluating how these dynamics of lan-
guage practice interplay with broader considerations on
social inclusion.
Social Inclusion, 2017, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 1–4 3
Finally, the linguistic landscape in Estonia is at the
center of the article by Svetlana L’nyavskiy-Ekelund and
Maarja Siiner (2017), who analyze the system of parallel
and separated schools for Russian and Estonian speak-
ing children. Contested as a system contributing to so-
cial injustice and segregation, the example of two pri-
vate schools and their linguistic practices is examined, as
the schools aim to drive inclusive institutions by employ-
ing inter alia multilingual practices. The case studies can
then be used to question how a positive attitude to mul-
tilingual competences could further improve social cohe-
sion in Estonia if the same outlook was broadened to a
larger set of schools.
The research leading to these results has received
funding from the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme
(FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no. 613344.
Conflict of Interests
The authors declare no conflict of interests.
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rights. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
Bröring, H., & Mijts, E. (2017). Language planning and
policy, law and (post)colonial relations in small island
states: A case study. Social Inclusion,5(4), 29–37.
Gobbo, F. (2017). Beyond the nation-state? The ideology
of the Esperanto movement between neutralism and
multilingualism. Social Inclusion,5(4), 38–47.
Grin, F., Marácz, L., Pokorn, N. K., & Kraus, P. A. (2014).
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About the Authors
László Marácz defended his PhD dissertation in General Linguistics at the University of Groningen in
1989. Since 1992, he is affiliated as an Assistant Professor to the Department of European Studies of
the University of Amsterdam. Prof. Dr. Marácz is ‘Honorary Professor ’ of the L.N. Gumilyov Eurasian Na-
tional University in Astana, Kazakhstan. He is vice-coordinator of the MIME-consortium (www.project- that won the European FP7-tender in 2013 under the reference of ‘SSH Call 2013.5.2-1:
Multilingual Challenge for the European Citizen’.
Silvia Adamo is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen. Her research inter-
ests and publications focus on migration and integration law, EU law, citizenship law and theory, criti-
cal legal theory, and linguistic diversity. She was a member of the international collaborative research
project ‘bEUcitizen: Barriers towards European Citizenship’, funded by the EU’s Seventh Framework
Programme (2014–2016). She is the co-editor of the book Linguistic Diversity and European Democ-
racy (Ashgate, 2011) and the Editor-in-Chief of Retfærd, Nordic Journal of Law and Justice.
Social Inclusion, 2017, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 1–4 4
... The prevalence of linguistically diverse and multilingual societies are increasing due to globalization and Europeanization (Marácz & Adamo, 2017;Nevskaya & Tazhibayeva, 2015b). English often is considered to be the lingua franca in international communication, business and technology. ...
Full-text available
This article discusses the practical issues of compiling controlled multilingual thesauri for the purposes of industry-specific translation (IST). In the multilingual, transnational and globally connected Kazakhstan, IST is a much-needed translation service. IST is an interdisciplinary field between terminology, computational linguistics, translation theory and practice. Most of the professional guides, dictionaries and glossaries are systemized in alphabetical order and contain multiple variants for the terms searched. Therefore, there is an urgent need to create a systemized controlled multilingual thesaurus of industry-specific Kazakh, English and Russian terms in order to provide multilingual users with an interoperable and relevant term base. Controlled multilingual thesauri for industry-specific terms are the most effective tools for describing individual subject areas. They are designed to promote communication and interaction among professionals, translators and all Automated Information System users of specific fields irrespective of their location and health conditions. Unlike traditional dictionaries, controlled thesauri allow users to identify the meaning with the help of definitions and translations, relations of terms with other concepts, and broader and narrower terms. The purpose of this research is to unify and systematize industry-specific terms in Kazakh, to provide Russian and English equivalents, and to classify the terms into essential rubrics and subjects. Based on the Zthes data scheme to create a controlled multilingual thesaurus of industryspecific terms, the major rubrics have been formulated, and about 10,000 Kazakh mining and metal terms approved by the Terminological Committee of Kazakhstan have been structured.
... At the same time, language policy uses political formations and their theoretical debates to create and strengthen links between language and citizenship; these debates, from political theory, explore arguments about social inclusion, either through the exis-tence and use of a shared and almost always dominant language, or through individual and public multilingualism (Ricento, 2006). In either case, linguistic diversity and social inclusion emerge here as facets of political and social praxis across a spectrum between monolingual and multilingual policy approaches, with complex and rather multi-layered relations between them (Marácz & Adamo, 2017). ...
Full-text available
Recent global trends in migration, trade and overall mobility have continued to transform our objective realities and subjective experiences around linguistic diversity. More broadly, in many countries, the politics of multilingualism seem to have changed the old links between language and nation-state. In this context, Scotland is studied in this article as a case study as it acts to dispel the myth of a ‘monolingual country.’ Its recent language policy, the “1+2 Language Approach” (Scottish Government, 2012b), including regional languages, modern foreign languages and heritage languages of migrants have created opportunities as well as imbalances and issues of equity in the Scottish language habitus. Drawing on Kraus’s work (2018), this article demonstrates how the policy creates language as ‘options’ and as ‘ligatures.’ However, these ‘options’ and ‘ligatures’ are not salient and straightforward. The policy is explored on three different levels: (1) on its potential for allowing the development of multilingual communication strategies such as intercomprehension, code-switching and mixing, (2) on its commitment to linguistic justice avoiding language hierarchies and (3) on its links with dominating, neoliberal approaches to education and the economy. The article finally concludes that options and ligatures visible in language policy impose some semantic order on the confusion of layered co-occurrences of various hegemonies, or the general strain between macro and micro distinction.
Adolescents resettled to the US from conflict-affected countries in the Middle East and North Africa region face a range of acculturative challenges, including language barriers, that may affect their wellbeing. This qualitative study aims to understand the variety of approaches US schools use to support the education of Arabic-speaking students. Utilizing Ruíz’s influential typology of language orientations, our analysis reveals a range of school approaches aligning most closely with the ‘language-as-problem’ and ‘language-as-resource’ orientations. Participants identified several perceived effects of these orientations on academic achievement and acculturation, and providers highlighted promising directions and potential barriers for bolstered language supports. Findings indicate that Arabic-speaking newcomer students experience persistent language inequity but also locate promising pathways towards reducing these inequities. We discuss structural shifts schools can implement to bolster language as a resource and move towards larger systems change in which heritage language is a right.
Introduction. Student migration exists over the whole period of society development and by the second half of the 20th century it is becoming a mass social phenomenon. A constant society complication under influence of information technologies gives student migration other forms. Considering the fact that student migration is a component part of unified educational process, its separate stages make actual differentiation of migrant students mobile behaviour, including localization of living environment, educational institution, educational activities and the interactive nature of training. The objective of the article is to attempt to explicate the phenomenon of student migration in the field of social philosophy, to consider its accompanying positive and negative aspects in the prism of distant context. Materials and Methods. The methodological basis of the study is interdisciplinary approach which allows to distinguish and describe the relationship of the phenomenon under study. Solution of research problems was provided by critical analysis intercomplementary methods and by interpretation of social reality phenomena based on the dialectic idea of removing the one-dimensionality of cognition of the globalizing educational space. The Results. The peculiarity of student migration was revealed consisting in 1) in the restriction of free movement in space; 2) in the forced relocation to the virtual reality of the digital format, which caused the imaginary territorial mobility; 3) in the weakening of direct contact with the host educational environment, leading to dissonance with the existing state of things; 4) in strengthening the cross-border nature of education, which allows to expand international cooperation with different countries. Discussion and Conclusions. Expected effect of student migration distant forms realization consists in a new interpretation of the subject of the universal, changing the attitude to migration. The media resonance that occurs everywhere contributes to the formation of prerequisites for a positive perception of the image of a migrant. Academic mobility caused by today’s modification of reality, was determined by the digitalization megatrend of educational institutions, which affected all aspects of life. Remote technologies have mitigated the problem of migrants’ adaptation to another cultural environment, neutralized the consequences of socio-cultural stress, which is usually experienced by the subject of both external and internal migration. Practical experience of remote forms realization of work with the subject of educational migration has shown the indisputability of universal involvement in the movement to a new type of knowledge production, the most important role in which is played by pragmatic situativeness and the powerful presence of digital environment tools.
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This article presents the history of the politics of multilingualism (or lack thereof) in regard to Roma (formerly known as ‘Gypsies’). In the 1920s and 1930s in the newly established Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, against a backdrop of proclaimed principles of full equality of all peoples living in the new state, commenced a rapid creation of schools for Roma children with instruction in Romani mother-tongue along with special training of Roma teachers. The results achieved were impressive in regard to the general literacy of Roma communities, but nevertheless in 1938 the ‘Gypsy schools’ have been closed and Roma children were enrolled into mainstream schools lacking any elements of multilingualism. After World War II individual countries of Eastern Europe implemented various forms of special education for Roma children, neither of which however with elements of multilingualism. Only after the collapse of communist regimes in Eastern Europe, in the conditions of transition and the subsequent Euro-integration, various singular countries in the region have developed individual elements of multilingualism and educational policies targeting Roma children (e.g., introducing under various forms a Romani language instruction). Sporadically there even appeared proposals for teaching instruction conducted entirely in Roma mother-tongue, which were debated and rejected (including by Roma themselves).
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Since its launch, Esperanto has attracted people involved in language politics. For them Esperanto provides an equitable solution when international problems are discussed, overcoming the barrier posed by the use of national languages and identities. However, its relation with the nation-state is far from being straightforward. Although a significant majority of the Movement claims Esperanto to be a neŭtrala lingvo , a neutral language, this has been fiercely contested by Esperanto activists committed to advancing particular programs for changing the world. From a sociolinguistic point of view, all Esperanto speakers are at least bilingual and quite often multilingual, without exception, so they always belong at least to one speech community in some way connected with a nation-state. This article illustrates the different facets of the Esperanto Movement from its beginning in 1887. Particular attention is paid to the concept of neutralism and how it has evolved in time. From the belle époque, Esperanto has been forced to re-define its position according to changes in sociopolitical contexts. In the current era of ‘glocalization’, where the spread of English worldwide is counterbalanced with old and new forms of local identities often linked with minority languages, Esperanto represents an alternative to the idea that global English leads to more social inclusion.
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This article examines the linguistic landscape of Manila during a protest march in November 2016 in response to the burial of deposed president Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Heroes’ Cemetery). This article is situated among linguistic landscape of protest research (Kasanga, 2014; Seals, 2011; Shiri, 2015) where data is composed of mobile posters, placards, banners, and other ‘unfixed’ signs, including texts on bodies, t-shirts, umbrellas, and rocks. Following Sebba (2010), this article argues that both ‘fixed’ linguistic landscape and ‘mobile’ public texts are indices of the linguistic composition of cities, linguistic diversity, and ethnolinguistic vitality (Landry & Bourhis, 1997). Through a qualitative analysis of selected pictures produced during the protest march and uploaded onto social media, the multilingual nature of Manila is rendered salient and visible, albeit temporarily, and strategies of dissent are reflective of the language of the millennials who populated the protests.
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This article draws attention to language choice and language use of Austrian bi- and multilingual school children. We explore some implications of their linguistic practices with regard to social inclusion in an Austrian educational school setting. Pursuing a Dynamic Systems and Complexity Theory approach, we hypothesise that before language users actually use a language within a certain context, they have to evaluate the respective communicative situation by taking multiple contextual factors into consideration, meaning language users choose to use, or not to use, a language based on the socio-contextual information at hand. We consider these contextual factors to be most relevant as they provide the basis on which speakers can actually make use of a certain language within a given context. By drawing on examples of empirical data obtained through a language background survey, we examine some of the complex and dynamic interactions of contextual parameters influencing language choice and language use in the formal educational setting of classroom instruction. Based on the results of this study, we display a selection of the dynamic and complex interactions of pupils’ language use in one specific context as well as their language preferences and how these relate to social inclusion.
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The period since the independence of the Republic of Macedonia in 1991 has shown the political importance of language, as well as the political tensions that can arise over language-related issues. For a long time, multilingualism in Macedonia was a problem that threatened the unity and stability of the country. In 2001 the armed conflict in Macedonia showed that governmental policies of ignoring certain issues fueled ethnic divisions and facilitated a climate of insecurity. In order to terminate the armed conflict, Macedonia has since introduced constitutional changes relevant to linguistic diversity. The constitutional amendment regulating the official use of languages in Macedonia was as a result of a necessary compromise to terminate the armed conflict. The amendment is formulated in a vague and contradictory manner; full of loopholes, views provided on official languages leads to different interpretations and is still subject to disputes between experts, as well as party leaders in Macedonia. This vagueness led to politicians using the topic of the official use of languages as a talking point in every electoral campaign since 2001. This article will examine the challenges and possibilities that came from the constitutional amendment on the use of languages in Macedonia. It will also analyze the loopholes of the legal norms on the use of languages, and the problems of its implementation.
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After the restoration of independence in 1991, Estonia continued with a parallel school system with separate public schools operating for Russian- and Estonian-speaking children. Seen as a developmental ‘growing pains’ of a transitional state, during the last 27 years the separate school system has contributed to infrastructural difficulties, educational injustice, and societal segregation. This article investigates the role of private schools in addressing this injustice from the analytical angle of new institutionalism, structuration and intergroup contact theories. How do these institutions challenge and aim at changing the state language regime or path dependency in the language of education? Two case studies are presented in this article: The Open School, established in 2017 for children with different home language backgrounds and targeting trilingual competences; The Sakala Private School, established in 2009, offering trilingual education with Russian as a medium of instruction. During this period of nation-state rebuilding and globalization, we investigate whether developing a multilingual habitus is a way to address the issue of social cohesion in the Estonian society in. So far, no other studies of private initiatives in Estonian language acquisition planning have been done.
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Drawing on the example of Multilingual Manchester, we show how a university research unit can support work toward a more inclusive society by raising awareness of language diversity and thereby helping to facilitate access to services, raise confidence among disadvantaged groups, sensitise young people to the challenges of diversity, and remove barriers. The setting (Manchester, UK) is one in which globalisation and increased mobility have created a diverse civic community; where austerity measures in the wake of the financial crisis a decade ago continue to put pressure on public services affecting the most vulnerable population sectors; and where higher education is embracing a neo-liberal agenda with growing emphasis on the economisation of research, commodification of teaching, and a need to demonstrate a ‘return on investment’ to clients and sponsors. Unexpectedly, perhaps, this environment creates favourable conditions for a model of participatory research that involves co-production with students and local stakeholders and seeks to shape public discourses around language diversity as a way of promoting values and strategies of inclusion.
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Language planning and policy (LLP) in postcolonial island states is often strongly (co)determined by the former colonizer’s state tradition. Comparable to the examples of the development of LPP in Cabo Verde (Baptista, Brito, & Bangura, 2010), Haiti (DeGraff, 2016), and Mauritius (Johnson, 2006; Lallmahomed-Aumeerally, 2005), this article aims to illustrate and explain in what way the current situation of the dominance of Dutch in governance, law and education in Aruba (and Curaçao) can only be explained through path dependency and state tradition (Sonntag & Cardinal, 2015) in which, time and again, critical junctures, have not led to decisions that favour the mother tongue of the majority of the population (Dijkhoff & Pereira, 2010; Mijts, 2015; Prins-Winkel, 1973; Winkel, 1955). In this article, three perspectives on LLP in small island states are explored as different aspects of the continuation of the former colonizer’s state tradition and language regime. The first part will focus on the (non-)applicability of international treaties like the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (ECRML) on the challenges of small island states. The point will be made that international treaties, like the ECRML, do not (currently) provide sufficient basis for the protection of languages in former colonial islands and for the empowerment of individuals through language rights. The second part explores the meaning of fundamental legal principles and specific demands, deduced from international treaties. The point will be made that the structure of the Kingdom of the Netherlands brings with it several limitations and obstacles for the autonomous development of LPP. The third part will focus on the way in which current Aruban legislation reflects the dominance of Dutch in governance, the judiciary and education. While bearing in mind that choices for legislation on language for governance, the judiciary and education are rooted in very diverse principles, a critical reading of existing legislation reveals an interesting dynamic of symbolic inclusive legislation and exclusive practices through language restrictions that favour the Dutch minority language. Recent research, however, demonstrates that law/policy and practice are not aligned, as such creating an incoherent situation that may call for a change in legislation and policy.
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A tension between mobility and inclusion can be seen in public sector attempts to respond to the increasingly multilingual nature of the Scottish population. Increased mobility has contributed to greater linguistic diversity, which has led to growing demand for multilingual public services. Legal instruments and education policy in Scotland provide a promising framework in terms of promoting language learning and multilingualism, but implementation is not always successful and responding to linguistic diversity among pupils is beset with challenges. This article will consider some of these challenges, both practical and attitudinal, reflecting on language teaching in Scotland and on issues raised during interviews with officials from the English as an additional language (EAL) services in Edinburgh and Glasgow. Language teaching often does not take into account the linguistic diversity present—despite the opportunity for a more inclusive approach offered by Scottish Government strategy—and this risks reinforcing negative beliefs about significant allochthonous languages in Scotland. In these circumstances, meeting the linguistic needs of increasingly multilingual school populations in an inclusive way is a challenging task.
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The migration of older people in search for improved quality of life has become an important form of human mobility, and popular retirement destinations are often highly multilingual settings. This article explores language use and social inclusion in international retirement migration through a case study of Scandinavian retirees in the Alicante province in Spain. It examines the linguistic landscape they meet, their language use and their inclusion in their new home country. Interviews with retired migrants and key local individuals show that many migrants try to learn the host country language, but that these attempts are often not very successful. As a result, they frequently use either their native language or English for everyday communication. This article elaborates on three theoretical and political notions of inclusion-assimilation, multiculturalism and civic integration-and discusses how retired migrants' language use can be interpreted in the light of these notions.