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ERIC Number: EJ828564
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Mar
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 87
ISSN: ISSN-0883-2919
English in Hong Kong Cantopop: Language Choice, Code-Switching and Genre
Chan, Brian Hok-Shing
World Englishes, v28 n1 p107-129 Mar 2009
Code-switching research has focused on spontaneous conversation, and code-switching has often been seen as a consequence of bilinguals attending to and extending the "macro" status and functions of the two languages in society, attitudes towards these languages, and their cultural connotations, for instance, the "we-code" vs. "they-code" distinction. In the Hong Kong context, code-switching to English has been primarily considered as quoting "Western" concepts and ideas, conveying referential and connotative meanings absent in Cantonese. Investigating a corpus of planned discourse, namely, Cantonese popular songs (i.e. Cantopop) in Hong Kong, this paper finds that the status and functions of English in Cantopop are more variable and flexible, beyond a mere symbol of "Western" culture or identity. Nonetheless, these functions can be attributed to the properties of the pop song genre, namely, Cantopop as poetic text, media text, and a product of pop culture; in particular, code-switching fits into the rhyming scheme, marks text structure, indexes prior texts, and conveys alternative identities.
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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: Hong Kong