Factors Contributing to Language Shift (Attitudes and Values (Slower…
Factors Contributing to Language Shift
Economic, social and political factors
Obtaining work is the most obvious economic reason for learning another language.
The community sees no reason to take active steps to maintain their ethnic language.
The social and economic goals of individuals in a community are very important in accounting for the speed of shift.
Rapid shift occur when people are anxious to 'get on' in a society where knowledge of the second language is a prerequisite for success.
More likely led by women or by men depend on the job and the gender roles in society.
Relevant for the speed of the language shift
Last longer in rural than in urban areas
Rural groups tend to be isolated from the centers of political power for longer
Ukrainians in Canada who live out of town on farms have maintained their ethnic language better than in towns.
Occur faster in some groups than in others
Depend on the size of the group
Example: Maltese speakers in Australia and Spanish speakers in USA
Intermarriage between groups can accelerate language shift
Attitudes and Values
Slower among communities where the minority language is highly valued
If the language is seen as an important symbol of ethnic identity, it maintain longer
Positive attitudes support the minority language in a variety of domains
example: Maintaining French in Canada and the USA