1st Edition

Heritage Language Policies around the World

Edited By Corinne A. Seals, Sheena Shah Copyright 2018
    284 Pages 14 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    284 Pages 14 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Heritage language policies define the context in which heritage languages are maintained or abandoned by communities, and this volume describes and analyzes international policy strategies, as well as the implications for the actual heritage language speakers.

    This volume brings together heritage language policy case studies from around the world, foregrounding globalization by covering five regions: the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australasia. The countries profiled include the United States, Canada, Argentina, Norway, Sweden, Ireland, Uganda, Namibia, Morocco, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, and Fiji. This volume also highlights an expanded definition of ‘heritage language’, choosing to focus on individual and community identities, and therefore including both Indigenous and immigrant languages.

    Focusing specifically on language policy relating to heritage languages, the chapters address key questions such as

    • Are heritage languages included or excluded from the national language policy discourse?
    • What are the successes and shortcomings of efforts to establish heritage language policies?
    • What is the definition of ‘heritage language’ in official usage by the local/regional government and stakeholders?
    • How are these language policies perceived by the actual heritage language communities?

    1. Introduction: A Focus on Heritage Language Policy

    (Corinne Seals and Sheena Shah)

    Part I: Americas

    2. Spanish in the United States

    (Janet Fuller and Julio Torres)

    3. Indigenous Languages in Canada

    (Suzanne Gessner, Tracy Herbert and Aliana Parker)

    4. Heritage Languages in Argentina

    (Cristina Banfi)

    Part II: Europe

    5. Kven in Norway

    (Pia Lane and Anna-Kaisa Räisänen)

    6. Finnish, Meänkieli, Yiddish, Romany and Sami in Sweden

    (Lena Ekberg)

    7. Minority and Heritage Languages in Ireland

    (Muiris ÓLaoire)

    Part III: Africa

    8. Amazigh in Morocco

    (Yamina El Kirat El Allame and Yassine Boussagui)

    9. German in Namibia

    (Sheena Shah and Marianne Zappen-Thomson)

    10. Luganda in Uganda

    (Judith Nakayiza)

    Part IV: Asia

    11. Ryukyuan Languages in Japan

    (Patrick Heinrich and Masahide Ishihara)

    12. Jejueo in South Korea

    (Matthias Brenzinger and Changyong Yang)

    13. Gujarati in Singapore

    (Sheena Shah and Ritu Jain)

    Part V: Australasia

    14. Te Reo Māori, Samoan, and Ukrainian in New Zealand

    (Corinne Seals and Vincent Olsen-Reeder)

    15. Indigenous and Immigrant Languages in Australia

    (Tony Liddicoat)

    16. Hindi in Fiji

    (Nikhat Shameem)


    Corinne Seals is a Lecturer of Applied Linguistics at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. She has recently published in the Routledge Handbook of Heritage Language Education (2017), the International Journal of Multilingualism, and Current Issues in Language Planning, among others.

    Sheena Shah is a Lecturer in Linguistics and Languages of Africa and Asia at SOAS University of London. She has published on endangered languages of Southern Africa, on Gujarati in London, Johannesburg, and Singapore, and on German varieties in Namibia and South Africa.