Family Language Policy: Maintaining an Endangered Language in the Home

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9781137521804: Family Language Policy: Maintaining an Endangered Language in the Home
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Why some children being raised in multilingual environments use more of their minority language than others is an important question both for researchers and caregivers of multilingual children. This book sheds light on this question by exploring it through the lens of three siblings on the Isle of Skye, Scotland, who are being raised in an extended family where the adults are trying to maintain the endangered language Scottish Gaelic with them. However, despite the adults' best efforts, and despite the fact that the children attend a Gaelic immersion school, none of the children currently use very much Gaelic. Smith-Christmas looks at the adults' individual language ideologies and their language practices with the children, as well as their language practices with each other and the language norms in the wider community, in order to explain why language maintenance is such a continual uphill struggle for this family.

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About the Author:

Cassie Smith-Christmas is a research fellow for Soillse, the inter-university Gaelic language research network. After completing her PhD at the University of Glasgow, Cassie took up her fellowship with the University of Highlands and Islands and has also held a fellowship at the Institute for the Advanced Studies in the Humanities, University of Edinburgh, UK.

Review:

"This brief but incisive and insightful study makes an important contribution to the emerging field of family language policy and to our understanding of the dynamics of language shift more generally."

-Wilson McLeod, Professor of Celtic and Scottish Studies, University of Edinburgh, UK

"This book has much to teach those who hope to halt the shift process that threatens the survival of many small and especially indigenous languages around the world. Read this book to learn why the final page does not foresee a completely dark future for Gaelic in this family or predict general failure for efforts to reverse language shift."

-Nancy Dorian, Emeritus Professor of Linguistics, Bryn Mawr College, USA

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Book Description Palgrave MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2015. Hardback. Condition: New. 1st ed. 2016. Language: English . Brand New Book. Based on an eight-year study of a family on the Isle of Skye, Scotland, this book explores why the children in the family do not often speak Gaelic, despite the adults best efforts to use the language with them, as well as the children s attendance at a Gaelic immersion school. Seller Inventory # AAZ9781137521804

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