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By  and Isabelle LégliseSophie Alby and Isabelle Léglise


Abstract (176 words) This article examines the case of Kali’na, a minority Indigenous language of French Guiana, from the point of view of descriptive categories available in the literature (namely dominated language, minoritized language, endangered language). These terms are discussed, favouring more dynamic categories which focus on processes (minoritization/deminoritization). The article uses both micro- and macrosociolinguistic levels of analysis. At the macro level, indicators are proposed to gauge the minorization of Kali’na as it occurs on the scale of Guiana as a whole, by observing attitudes towards Kali’na language and culture, particularly as expressed in the media and in epilinguistic comments made by speakers. At the local level, we explore the effects of the recognition by the State of a Kali’na township and their influence on language minoritization in the village and more generally at the level of the linguistic community. We also attempt to determine to what extent, as far as interactions are concerned, alternations and code switching between Kali’na and French might constitute indicators of the process of minoritization or deminoritization or of language death currently underway. Minorization and the process of (de)minoritization: the case of Kali’na in Frenc

Year: 2008
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