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Journal of Cross-Cultural and Interlanguage Communication

Ed. by Piller, Ingrid

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Volume 35, Issue 4


“Languaging the worker: Globalized governmentalities in/of language in peripheral spaces”

Kati Dlaske / Elisabeth Barakos / Kyoko Motobayashi / Mireille McLaughlin
Published Online: 2016-01-06 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/multi-2015-0009


In the introduction to the special issue “Languaging the worker: globalized governmentalities in/of language in peripheral spaces”, we take up the notion of governmentality as a means to interrogate the complex relationship between language, labor, power and subjectivity in peripheral multilingual spaces. Our aim here is to argue for the study of governmentality as a viable and growing approach in critical sociolinguistic research. As such, in this introduction, we first discuss key concepts germane to our interrogations, including the notions of governmentality, languaging, peripherality and language worker. We proceed to map out five ethnographically and discourse-analytically informed case studies. These examine diverse actors in different settings pertaining to the domain of work. Finally we chart how the case studies construe the issue of languaging the worker through a governmentality frame.

Keywords: governmentality; sociolinguistics of globalization; peripherality; work; multilingualism


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About the article

Published Online: 2016-01-06

Published in Print: 2016-07-01

Funding: The special issue was produced in the context of the Peripheral Multilingualism research project (2011–2015) (www.peripheralmultilingualism.fi), funded by the Academy of Finland.

Citation Information: Multilingua, Volume 35, Issue 4, Pages 345–359, ISSN (Online) 1613-3684, ISSN (Print) 0167-8507, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/multi-2015-0009.

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