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ERIC Number: EJ904191
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Nov
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
ISSN: ISSN-0790-8318
Code-Switching and Code-Mixing in Welsh Bilinguals' Talk: Confirming or Refuting the Maintenance of Language Boundaries?
Musk, Nigel
Language, Culture and Curriculum, v23 n3 p179-197 Nov 2010
This article closely examines the bilingual talk emerging from informal discussions among young people attending a bilingual school in Wales. In contrast to the common focus on issues of bilinguals' linguistic competence in the literature, this paper advocates a speaker's perspective and considers bilingualism to be the sedimentation of social and linguistic practices of bilinguals, where code-alternation is often prevalent. Using a conversation analytic approach to code-switching, I distinguish between two different kinds of code-alternation: unmarked "code-mixing" and marked "code-switching" on the basis of speakers' own orientations. When these bilinguals speak Welsh, for most of the time the language boundary between Welsh and English is only loosely maintained. However, on occasion code-switching is used as a meaning-making resource, e.g. for the purpose of quoting others. It is this marked code-switching that requires bilinguals to separate and distinguish between the two language mediums, and thereby also maintain the language boundary. At the same time, these findings disclose a gap between informal language practices and the ideological insistence on maintaining strict language boundaries, for example, in educational contexts. (Contains 8 notes, 2 tables, and 2 figures.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Wales)