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Building National Identity Through National Language: Selected Case Studies


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Bostock, WW 2011 , 'Building National Identity Through National Language: Selected Case Studies', in Culture: Heritage and Legacy , Conflict and Development, vol. Papers , JAPPS Press, Bangkok, Houston, San Jose, Delray Beach, pp. 61-84.

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A strong sense of national identity is seen as essential to a stable and enduring state. But can national identity be built, or must it just be allowed to “happen”? It is argued that as language plays an essential role in creating and maintaining identity, national identity can be built through national language (NL). However, to be effective, NL policy must address some important issues, such as whether the selected NL has negative colonial associations, prior lingua franca status, claims of ownership by a specific group, accessibility, diffusion and sense of security. The diverse experiences of India, Indonesia, South Africa and Sri Lanka are presented and a general model of the criteria for a successful NL policy offered.

Item Type: Book Section
Authors/Creators:Bostock, WW
Keywords: national language, national identity, language policy, language grief
Publisher: JAPPS Press
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Copyright © 2011 Journal of Alternative Perspectives in the Social Sciences

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