International Journal of the Sociology of Language
Founded by Fishman, Joshua A.
Ed. by Garcia Otheguy, Ofelia / Duchêne, Alexandre / Coulmas, Florian
6 Issues per year
CiteScore 2016: 0.53
SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.505
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.716
Parallel to the current growth of societal and individual multilingualism, there is also a multiplication of the availability of and need for multilingual written texts of all types. Both the number and the type of such texts in a given area depend on a variety of factors, such as the number of languages present, language policy, the status of speakers, the self-esteem of speakers, the reader-orientation of text suppliers, etc., and thus the number and type of these texts reflect the social layering within a community. The article proposes a model for describing and analyzing multilingual written texts in a way that facilitates meaningful analyses both within and across regions, domains, and societies by using parameters such as spatial mobility of the object inscribed, visibility of multilingualism, and specific type of the arrangement of multilingual information (duplicating, fragmentary, overlapping, complementary). The model is exemplified on the basis of stationary multilingual written text as observed in Lira Town (Uganda) between 2000 and 2002. These and additional data are then used (a) to supply brief analyses for a number of linguistically visible domains (health, agriculture, bookshops, politics, advertising) by correlating the publicly visible written language use with the linguistic knowledge of the population, and (b) to discuss its potential influence on the status of the languages involved.
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