Bilingualism or Not: The Education of Minorities by Tove Skutnabb-Kangas

By Tove Skutnabb-Kangas

This publication bargains with bilingualism, really because it pertains to migrants and indigenous minorities. humans from (linguistic) minorities frequently need to turn into bilingual so that it will cope within the better society, whereas majority representatives could voluntarily turn into bilingual. The booklet starts with a simply linguistic assurance of bilingualism after which offers with the must haves and results of bilingualism from the views of psychology and pedagogy. It then strikes on from the relations and the varsity to overseas comparisons of societies with diversified minority regulations. It additionally analyses controversies concerning the schooling of migrants and minorities and areas them within the wider political context. one of the issues lined are the mum tongue, its improvement and value and the way it differs from languages discovered later definitions and size of bilingualism alternative ways of changing into bilingual for various teams, within the college and the relations bilingualism, cognitive improvement and college fulfillment semilingualism visitor employee coverage and immigrant coverage violence in minority schooling.

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And we have very little information about the long-term effects. Most of the anecdotal evidence tells us nothing about the long-term consequences. Most of the evidence of this kind seems also to be derived from situations of the kind we have described above: middle class children, whose own language is not under threat, and who are much encouraged and praised by adults for learning a new one. The case study evidence, too, is often of this kind: a child of an academic family, moving to another country, with high-SES parents.

More and more, people in this situation are advised to choose as their common means of communication the language which has less support in society at large, thus Finnish in a Swedishspeaking area, and Swedish in a Finnish area. However, in most cases the parents' linguistic competence determines the choice of language: it will be the language the other partner speaks best. Minority speakers are mostly more bilingual than majority speakers. According to the census of 1950, which in Finland was the last to include a question about knowledge of the two national languages, 46% of < previous page page_20 next page > < previous page page_21 next page > Page 21 Swedish speakers but only 8% of Finnish speakers declared that they had at least a tolerable oral command of the other language (Skutnabb-Kangas, 1975g: 14-15).

According to the census of 1950, which in Finland was the last to include a question about knowledge of the two national languages, 46% of < previous page page_20 next page > < previous page page_21 next page > Page 21 Swedish speakers but only 8% of Finnish speakers declared that they had at least a tolerable oral command of the other language (Skutnabb-Kangas, 1975g: 14-15). Unfortunately, the majority language often comes to be the parents' common language, even though each of them may speak her or his own language to the children.

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