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ERIC Number: EJ912633
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1550-7076
Heritage Language Maintenance and Cultural Identity Formation: The Case of a Turkish Saturday School in New York City
Otcu, Bahar
Heritage Language Journal, v7 n2 p112-137 Fall 2010
This paper investigates the role of a Turkish Saturday school in the United States in helping students maintain the Turkish language and form a sense of Turkish cultural identity. This case study of one Turkish Saturday school in New York City builds on research in language maintenance and shift, and in language ideologies and linguistic identity to explore the school's administrators', teachers', students' and parents' beliefs and practices. The data were analyzed using Gee's Discourse analysis framework, specifically his six building tasks. Findings showed that the Turkish language is the primary means to construct a Turkish cultural identity in the U.S. Five overarching goals of the Turkish school emerged: (1) connection building: the school as a bridge to Turkish heritage, (2) collectivity building: bringing together the Turkish speech community, (3) contentment building: the school as a venue for the adults to feel moral satisfaction, (4) identity building: building a Turkish American identity in the U.S., and (5) diversity indicating: enabling the school clientele to see themselves as one of many other ethnolinguistic groups in the United States. (Contains 1 table and 5 notes.)
National Heritage Language Resource Center and UC Consortium for Language Learning & Teaching. 1333 Rolfe Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1411. Tel: 310-825-1138; Fax: 310-206-5183; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York