Multilingualism in the Chinese Diaspora Worldwide: Transnational Connections and Local Social Realities, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Multilingualism in the Chinese Diaspora Worldwide

Transnational Connections and Local Social Realities, 1st Edition

Edited by Li Wei


324 pages | 22 B/W Illus.

Look Inside
Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138499065
pub: 2018-02-12
SAVE ~$10.99
Hardback: 9781138794245
pub: 2015-11-10
SAVE ~$34.00
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315759371
pub: 2015-10-16
from $27.48

FREE Standard Shipping!


In this volume, Li Wei brings together contributions from well-known and emerging scholars in socio- and anthropological linguistics working on different linguistic and communicative aspects of the Chinese diaspora. The project examines the Chinese diasporic experience from a global, comparative perspective, with a particular focus on transnational links, and local social and multilingual realities. Contributors address the emergence of new forms of Chinese in multilingual contexts, family language policy and practice, language socialization and identity development, multilingual creativity, linguistic attitudes and ideologies, and heritage language maintenance, loss, learning and re-learning.

The studies are based on empirical observations and investigations in Chinese communities across the globe, including well-researched (from a sociolinguistic perspective) areas such as North America, Western Europe and Australia, as well as under-explored and under-represented areas such as Africa, Latin America, Central Asia, and the Middle East; the volume also includes detailed ethnographic accounts representing regions with a high concentration of Chinese migration such as Southeast Asia. This volume not only will allow sociolinguists to investigate the link between linguistic phenomena in specific communities and wider socio-cultural processes, but also invites an open dialogue with researchers from other disciplines who are working on migration, diaspora and identity, and those studying other language-based diasporic communities such as the Russian diaspora, the Spanish diaspora, the Portuguese diaspora, and the Arabic diaspora.


"This new book represents a first major attempt to provide a systematic overview of Chinese migrants and their descendants living in linguistically and socioculturally diverse host societies far away from their homeland. The book offers many insights showing how members of various Chinese diasporic communities straddle and harness conflicting identities through their day-to-day linguistic and cultural practices. Students of migration, sociolinguistics, bi-/multi-lingualism, cultural studies, intercultural communication and neighboring social science disciplines will find it a useful reference." —David Shing Chor Li, The Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong

Table of Contents

1. Transnational Connections and Multilingual Realities: The Chinese diasporic experience in a global context Li Wei Part I: Emerging Diaspora, Emerging Identities 2. Globalization Off the Beaten Track—Chinese Migration to South Africa’s Rural Towns Ana Deumert and Nkululeko Mabandla 3. Polycentric Repertoires: Constructing Dutch-Chinese Youth Identities in the Classroom and Online Jinling Liand Kasper Juffermans 4. Sojourner Tongues: Language Practices among the Chinese of Cairo Wang Jie Part II: Changing Times, Changing Languages 5. The Dungans of Kazakhstan: Old minority in a new nation-state Juldyz Smagulova 6. Chinese-Spanish Contact in Cuba in the 19th Century J. Clancy Clements 7. Shifting identities, shifting practices: The Chinese-speaking communities in Suriname Paul Brendan Tjon Sie Fat 8. Multilingualism and the West Kalimantan Hakka Josh Stenberg 9. Being Chinese Again: Learning Mandarin in post-Suharto Indonesia Charlotte Setijadi Part III: Transnational Communities, Cultural Mediators 10. Multilingualism in the Chinese community in Japan John C. Maher 11. From monolingualism to multilingualism: The linguistic landscape in Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown Wang Xiaomei, Koh Yi Chern, Patricia Nora Riget, and Supramani Shoniah 12. Grandmother’s tongue: decline of Teochew language in Singapore Lee Cher Leng 13. Multilingual mediators: The (continuing) role of the Peranakans in the contact dynamics of Singapore Lisa Lim Part IV: Transnational Families, Transcultural Living 14. The transnational journey of an Indonesian Chinese couple in Hong Kong: the story of one family, three places, and multiple languages Katherine Hoi Ying Chen 15. Family Language Policy in the Chinese Community in Singapore: A Question of Balance? Xiao Lan Curdt-Christiansen 16. Language Maintenance in the Chinese Diaspora in Australia Linda Tsung 17. Across Generations and Geographies: Communication in Chinese Heritage Language Speaking Households Agnes Weiyun He

About the Editor

Li Wei is Chair of Applied Linguistics and Director of the UCL Centre for Applied Linguistics at the UCL Institute of Education, University College London, UK.

About the Series

Routledge Critical Studies in Multilingualism

Routledge Critical Studies in Multilingualism is devoted to the publishing of original research, of global scope and relevance, which incorporates critical and post-structuralist perspectives. The series also seeks to reflect different strands of empirical work which are interpretive, ethnographic and multimodal in nature and which embrace new epistemologies and new research methods.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / Sociolinguistics