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ERIC Number: EJ864250
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
ISSN: ISSN-1461-0213
Multilingual Asia: Looking Back, Looking across, Looking Forward
Bruthiaux, Paul
AILA Review, v22 n1 p120-130 2009
In any discussion of multilingual Asia, caution is in order, for two reasons. One is that Asia is a vast land mass connecting variegated peoples cartographically but not sociologically. Second, describing and accounting for the sociolinguistic complexities of Asia (or anywhere else, for that matter) is history in the making in that, just like populations themselves, languages and the social factors they affect and are affected by are highly fluid. But of course, commonalities do exist, at least across the language issues and the locations considered in this volume. In this article, the author discusses some commonalities that address the most fundamental or the most controversial aspects of language in the parts of contemporary Asia examined in this volume. Some of these issues are methodological, including the need for useful terminologies and the advisability of forecasting sociolinguistic or educational developments. Some are geopolitical, such as the respective roles of China and India in shaping the (probable) sociolinguistic ecology of the region in the coming decades. Others are conceptual, among them theoretical models such as Kachru's Tree Circles or the notion of "bilingualism". Overall, the author aims to support the more robust conclusions and policy recommendations for language education made in the contributions to this volume for specific locations in the region, and he suggests ways in which some of the discussions might be deepened and issues habitually skirted around might be more confidently and usefully addressed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Asia