Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Smith-Christmas, C.
2018
Unknown
Multilingua-Journal Of Cross-Cultural And Interlanguage Comm
One Cas, Two Cas’: Exploring the affective dimensions of family language policy
Published
()
Optional Fields
The aim of this article is to illustrate the fluid nature of family language policy (FLP) and how the realities of any one FLP are re-negotiated by caregivers and children in tandem. In particular, the paper will focus on the affective dimensions of FLP and will demonstrate how the same reality – in this case, a grandmother’s use of a child-centred discourse style as a means to encouraging her grandchildren to use their minority language, Scottish Gaelic – can play out differently among siblings. Using a longitudinal perspective, the paper begins by examining a recorded interaction between a grandmother, Nana, 1 and her granddaughter Maggie (3;4) and will discuss how Nana’s high use of questions and laissez-faire attitude to Maggie’s use of English contribute to the child-centred nature of the interaction, and in turn, to Maggie’s playful use of Gaelic. The paper then examines an interaction recorded five years later in which Nana interacts with Maggie’s brother Jacob (4;0) in the same affective style; however, unlike Maggie, Jacob evidences overtly negative affective stances towards his minority language. The paper concludes by discussing these observations in light of the reflexive nature of FLP in terms of emotional affect, linguistic input, and language shift.
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