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International Journal of the Sociology of Language

Founded by Fishman, Joshua A.

Ed. by Duchêne, Alexandre / Coulmas, Florian

CiteScore 2016: 0.53

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.505
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.716

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Volume 2011, Issue 210


Language policy and ideology in Italy

Federica Guerini
Published Online: 2011-06-25 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl.2011.033


This paper investigates language policy and ideology in present-day Italy by adopting a domain approach, i.e. an approach examining the interrelation among language practices, language beliefs and language management activities in specific domains of language use (Spolsky, Language management, Cambridge University Press, 2009a). The complex interrelation between the various languages and language varieties in contact will be explored by reporting a few examples of actual language practices. I will discuss, first of all, the possibility of assigning constitutional officiality to Italian in the changing national political scenario. The next section will be devoted the policy governing language use in the public linguistic space, with a special focus on written materials, radio and television broadcasting, and computer mediated communication. This will be followed by a section on language policy within the educational system, which is generally considered to be a crucial domain in the ecology of any speech community. The relationship between the development of the Italian nation state since political unification in 1861 and Italian as the national language will also be explored; the process of “Italianization” aimed at the eradication of Italo-Romance dialects as elements of political disunity will be pointed out as a crucial aspect in the linguistic ecology of the nation.

Keywords:: language policy; language attitudes; literacy; dialect revival

About the article

Published Online: 2011-06-25

Published in Print: 2011-07-01

Citation Information: International Journal of the Sociology of Language, Volume 2011, Issue 210, Pages 109–126, ISSN (Online) 1613-3668, ISSN (Print) 0165-2516, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl.2011.033.

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