Multilingualism in the Andes : Policies, Politics, Power book cover
1st Edition

Multilingualism in the Andes
Policies, Politics, Power

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after December 16, 2022
ISBN 9780367141226
December 16, 2022 Forthcoming by Routledge
240 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This illuminating book critically examines multicultural language politics and policymaking in the Andean-Amazonian countries of Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia, demonstrating how issues of language and power throw light on the relationship between Indigenous peoples and the state.

Based on the author’s research in Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia over several decades, Howard draws comparisons over time and space. With due attention to history, the book’s focus is situated in the years following the turn of the millennium, a period in which ideological shifts have affected continuity in official policy delivery even as processes of language shift from Indigenous languages such as Aymara and Quechua, to Spanish, have accelerated. The book combines in-depth description and analysis of state-level activity with ethnographic description of responses to policy on the ground. The author works with concepts of technologies of power and language regimentation to draw out the hegemonic workings of power as exercised through language policy creation at multiple scales.

This book will be key reading for students and scholars of critical sociolinguistic ethnography, the history, society and politics of the Andean region, and linguistic anthropology, language policy and planning, and Latin American studies more broadly.

Table of Contents

Table of contents

Preface by Luis Enrique López


List of acronyms

List of figures and tables

Part I Setting the scene

Chapter 1 Introduction

A colonial prelude

The multilingual states of Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia

The ethnographic and cross-disciplinary nature of the research

Historical roots of Indigenous language policy in the Andes

Indigenous social movements in Latin America and scholarly responses

Indigenous language policy in the Andes today

The view of language guiding my research

The structure of the book

Chapter 2 Languages, peoples, places


The cultural positioning of the self in the Andes

Social classification and naming of peoples and languages

Language ideologies, semiosis, and the performance of identities

Languages and peoples: a geographical view

Language distribution

A statistical view

Language usage

Indigenous peoples and the state

Final remarks: Indigenous people, language, and the environment

Chapter 3 Language policies, politics, and power


The field of language policy and planning research

Language and power

Institutional arrangements for the governance of the plural state

Legislative instruments for the regimentation of Indigenous languages

Paradigms of diversity: shifting discourses of the plural state

Language policy and the technologies of power

Final remarks

Part II Language and power in the education sphere

Indigenous education in the Andes: Introduction

Chapter 4 The policies and politics of Indigenous education in Ecuador

The peak years of IBE in Ecuador: 1988-2006

IBE in the Citizen Revolution years: 2007-2017

IBE teacher training programmes and Indigenous Universities

Indigenous education in Ecuador since 2017

Final remarks

Chapter 5 The policies and politics of Indigenous education in Peru

1900-1930: Education and the "civilising" process

1930-1970: Expanding Westernisation and Hispanisation

1970-1990: Education policy for a multilingual and pluricultural reality

1990-2006: Neo-liberalism meets the politics of identity

2006-2011 An anti-Indigenous turn

2011-2020 Envisioning a multilingual state

Managing sociolinguistic diversity in policy and practice

Final remarks

Chapter 6 The policies and politics of Indigenous education in Bolivia


20th century up until the 1952 Revolution

1952 to 1982 including periods of military rule

1982 return to democracy until 2005

Evo Morales’s presidency 2006-2019

Final remarks

Indigenous education in the Andes: Comparative summary

Part III Language in (post-)colonial spaces

Chapter 7 Literacy, textualisation and mediatisation


A people without writing?

Literacy in the colonial period

Ideologies of literacy and symbolic power

Graphisation of Andean Indigenous languages

Vernacular literacies in present times

Andean Indigenous languages in literature, popular culture, and media

Final remarks

Chapter 8 Translation and interpreting: From past to present


Theoretical considerations and the Andean context

Interpreting and translation in historical perspective

Translation and interpreting in the post-millennial period

Final remarks

Chapter 9 Concluding reflections: Paradoxes of diversity

Glossary of terms

List of legislative instruments



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Rosaleen Howard is Professor Emerita with specialism in Latin American Sociolinguistics and Linguistic Anthropology. Editor of Creating Context in Andean Cultures (Oxford University Press, 1997) and co-editor of Knowledge and Learning in the Andes: Ethnographic Perspectives (Liverpool University Press, 2002). Author of Por los linderos de la lengua: ideologías lingüísticas en los Andes (Institute of Peruvian Studies, Lima, 2007) and Beyond the lexicon of difference: Discursive Performance of Identity in the Andes, Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies, 4 (1): 17–46, 2009.