Intergenerational indigenous language transmission and family language policies: the case of three Pewenche families in south Chile
AuthorEspinoza Alvarado, Marco
AffiliationSchool of Languages and Linguistics
Document TypePhD thesis
Access StatusThis item is embargoed and will be available on 2020-10-19.
© 2018 Dr. Marco Espinoza Alvarado
This study set out to determine the extent to which the levels of intergenerational transmission of Chedungun in three Spanish-Chedungun bilingual Pewenche families were related to their family language policies. The levels of intergenerational transmission were measured in terms of predominant language use at home, number of active speakers of Chedungun, and age of the youngest speaker of Chedungun (Lewis, 2008). The language policies were analysed using Spolsky’s model (2004) on the levels of language practices, language management, and language ideologies. The data analysed in this study, which were collected during two fieldwork periods in the semi-isolated rural indigenous community where these families live, come from recordings of naturally occurring intragenerational and intergenerational interactions in each family, semi-structured interviews to the parents, and participant observation. Data were analysed both quantitatively and qualitatively. Results suggest that the different levels of ILT identified for each family can be closely related to each family’s own language policy on these three levels, and where the language ideological component appears to play a central role. The incorporation of notions such as “parental ethnotheories” (Fogle, 2013) and “chronotopes” (Catedral & Djiuraeva, 2018) proved useful in order to better grasp the micro and macro factors involved in the language policies in these families, the rationale behind parental language decisions, and how these translate into language practices and management efforts, and, ultimately, in the transmission of Chedungun.
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