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Intergenerational language transmission in an established Australian migrant community: what makes the difference?

Borland, Helen (2006) Intergenerational language transmission in an established Australian migrant community: what makes the difference? International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 180 (1). pp. 23-41. ISSN 0165-2516

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Abstract

Diasporic communities formed as a result of recent migration movements face particular issues and challenges in supporting the intergenerational transmission of their heritage language, especially when the language involved is not one that has high visibility and status in the surrounding society. This article is a case study of a mature migrant community in Melbourne, Australia - people of Maltese background - and aims to explore in some depth factors that are promoting and inhibiting intergenerational language transmission within the community. Two groups of factors are identified - facilitating factors and motivating factors - and these are discussed and related to the experiences and attitudes of the interviewees. The parents interviewed represent two vintages of migration: pre- and post-independence in Malta. Superficially, it appears that the post-independence migrants have a stronger commitment to intergenerational language transmission. However, it is argued that this only partially explains the observed differences. For both vintages, changes in the opportunities for diasporic engagement and in government policy settings in both the homeland and in Australia are creating an environment which is more facilitative of intergenerational language transmission for families motivated to support such transmission

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: ResPubID: 12035, emigration, immigration, immigrants, Australian migrant community, ethnic minority communities, language maintenance
Subjects: Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Communication and the Arts
FOR Classification > 2003 Language Studies
Depositing User: VUIR
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2009 23:09
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2011 05:11
URI: http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/2166
DOI: 10.1515/IJSL.2006.038
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Citations in Scopus: 11 - View on Scopus

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