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Singular and PluralIdeologies of Linguistic Authority in 21st Century Catalonia$
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Kathryn A. Woolard

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190258610

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190258610.001.0001

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Back to the Future

Back to the Future

High School Revisited

(p.211) 7 Back to the Future
Singular and Plural

Kathryn A. Woolard

Oxford University Press

This chapter gauges the effects of Catalan-medium educational language policies through an ethnographic re-study of the same high school where the author had carried out a classroom case study twenty years earlier. The changes in students’ linguistic practices, attitudes, and discourses parallel those seen in the public sphere. Use of Catalan is less restricted by essentialist authenticity value and is correspondingly more widespread among young people of working-class Castilian-speaking origin in this cohort than in the earlier one, as is a claim to Catalan identity. However, the Catalan language is perceived as monolithic, formal, and refined, while Castilian is perceived as informal, crude, and forceful. Catalan- and Castilian-speaking classmates share attitudes about the languages and about youth identities. Mixed language practices are more frequent in their relations than among the earlier cohort.

Keywords:   high school, adolescents, educational language policy, language attitudes, second language acquisition, youth cultural identities, bilingualism, friendship, social interaction

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