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Imagining Wales and the Welsh language: Ethnolinguistic subjectivities and demographic flow

Coupland, Nikolas John Robert, Bishop, Hywel, Evans, Betsy and Garrett, Peter Donald 2006. Imagining Wales and the Welsh language: Ethnolinguistic subjectivities and demographic flow. Journal of Language and Social Psychology 25 (4) , pp. 351-376. 10.1177/0261927X06292803

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A survey of approximately 2,000 informants with links to Wales provided differentiated data on Welsh social identities and affiliation, engagement with Welsh cultural practices, and perceptions of the ethnolinguistic vitality of the Welsh language and of domain priorities for Welsh. The data were interrogated mainly in relation to “flowgroups” (participants with different patterns of lived history inside and outside Wales) and groups based on degrees of Welsh-language competence. Flows and competence were potent factors predicting felt affiliation to Wales and many other subjective stances. Strong affiliation to Wales and moderate levels of optimism about Welsh's future were expressed, feelings not restricted to informants within Wales. The Welsh diaspora in North America offers strong symbolic support for the project of Wales and for the Welsh language, as do returning émigrés. Perspectives on cultural flow challenge assumptions about cultural boundedness and authenticity. The data show the need to account for Welsh ethnolinguistic subjectivities in terms of demographic mobility and complexity.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PB Modern European Languages > PB1001 Celtic languages and literature
Uncontrolled Keywords: Wales, Welsh language, diaspora, affiliation, vitality, heritage, globalization
Publisher: Sage Publications
ISSN: 0261-927X
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 01:51

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