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International Journal of the Sociology of Language

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Ed. by Garcia Otheguy, Ofelia / Duchêne, Alexandre / Coulmas, Florian

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Volume 2017, Issue 248


Language ideologies in a Uyghur comedy sketch: the comedy sketch Chüshenmidim ‘I don’t understand’ and the importance of Sap Uyghur

Giulia Cabras
Published Online: 2017-08-15 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl-2017-0032


Uyghur, a Turkic language spoken mostly in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China, is at present undergoing changes in usage. The spread of Standard Chinese promoted by the national government and the growing Han population are contributing to the Sinicization of Uyghur and shaping new language practices. Language-related issues are therefore a common topic in the Uyghur community, in intellectual discourse as well as in daily conversation. This article analyses a Uyghur comedy sketch entitled Chüshenmidim, ‘I don’t understand’, whose main theme is the Sinicization of the Uyghur language. In this analysis, I focus on parts of the sketch that reveal Uyghurs’ attitudes towards the emergent code switching, the use of Chinese loanwords, and the value of the mother tongue for identity formation.

Keywords: language ideologies; purism; Uyghur language; Uyghur–Chinese code switching


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About the article

Published Online: 2017-08-15

Published in Print: 2017-09-26

Citation Information: International Journal of the Sociology of Language, Volume 2017, Issue 248, Pages 97–111, ISSN (Online) 1613-3668, ISSN (Print) 0165-2516, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl-2017-0032.

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