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ERIC Number: EJ1134479
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1479-0718
Mapping the Linguistic Landscape of Athens: The Case of Shop Signs
Nikolaou, Alexander
International Journal of Multilingualism, v14 n2 p160-182 2017
This paper focuses on the linguistic composition of commercial signs in the linguistic landscape (LL) of Athens, Greece. Previous studies have mainly been carried out in officially multilingual and multi-ethnic areas [Ben-Rafael, E., Shohamy, E., Amara, M. H., & Trumper-Hecht, N. (2006). "Linguistic landscape as symbolic construction of the public space: The case of Israel." In D. Gorter (Ed.)," Linguistic landscape: A new approach to multilingualism" (pp. 7-28). Clevedon: "Multilingual Matters"; Cenoz, J., & Gorter, D. (2006). "Linguistic landscape and minority languages." In D. Gorter (Ed.), "Linguistic landscape: A new approach to multilingualism" (pp. 67-80). Clevedon: "Multilingual Matters"; Huebner, T. (2006). "Bangkok's linguistic landscapes: Environmental print, code mixing and language change." In D. Gorter (Ed.), "Linguistic landscape: A new approach to multilingualism (pp. 31-51). Clevedon: "Multilingual Matters"]. Greece, however, is characterised by official monolingualism and a great degree of ethnic homogenisation, which suggests that apart from tourist areas, one would expect that languages and scripts other than Greek would not be as visible as in contexts characterised by official or "de facto" multilingualism. A total of 621 shop signs were collected and analysed both quantitatively and qualitatively. The findings indicate that a significant number of shops employ--often creatively--languages other than Greek, either monolingually or in combination with Greek, resulting in a situation of written multilingualism, with English emerging as the strongest linguistic player. The results also strongly suggest that the multilingual character of commercial signs is not primarily informational but symbolic reflecting a desire to project a cosmopolitan, sophisticated, and trendy outlook.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Greece (Athens)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A