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Pluricentricity and sociolinguistic relationships between French, English and indigenous Languages in New Caledonia

Chapter


Abstract


  • This paper examines language attitudes in New Caledonia, where

    French, a pluricentric language, comes in contact with indigenous Melanesian

    languages and Tayo, a French-based Creole. Results from a recent sociolinguistic

    study reveal that whilst indigenous languages are valued as cultural heritage, there

    is a noticeable shift from these non-dominant languages towards French in the

    domestic context, particularly in younger generations living in urban areas. French

    has official status and is the vehicular language perceived as the cement that unites

    the whole population. English, another pluricentric language with a dominant role

    in the Pacific, is non -dominant in New Caledonia, and for most a foreign language.

    The relationship between French and the indigenous languages is one of classic

    diglossia, where French has the higher status. The first section of this paper gives

    a brief overview of the social history and language situation in New Caledonia. It

    then examines patterns oflanguage use in multilingual context. Finally it explores

    social attitudes towards French, English and non-dominant vernaculars through a

    questionnaire and interview on the eve of the independence referendum.

Publication Date


  • 2015

Citation


  • Bissoonauth, A. (2015). Pluricentricity and sociolinguistic relationships between French, English and indigenous Languages in New Caledonia. In R. Muhr, D. Marley, H. L. Kretzenbacher & A. Bissoonauth (Eds.), Pluricentricity Languages: New Perspectives in Theory and Description (pp. 273-287). Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Edition.

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9783631664339

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/2143

Book Title


  • Pluricentricity Languages: New Perspectives in Theory and Description

Start Page


  • 273

End Page


  • 287

Place Of Publication


  • Frankfurt am Main

Abstract


  • This paper examines language attitudes in New Caledonia, where

    French, a pluricentric language, comes in contact with indigenous Melanesian

    languages and Tayo, a French-based Creole. Results from a recent sociolinguistic

    study reveal that whilst indigenous languages are valued as cultural heritage, there

    is a noticeable shift from these non-dominant languages towards French in the

    domestic context, particularly in younger generations living in urban areas. French

    has official status and is the vehicular language perceived as the cement that unites

    the whole population. English, another pluricentric language with a dominant role

    in the Pacific, is non -dominant in New Caledonia, and for most a foreign language.

    The relationship between French and the indigenous languages is one of classic

    diglossia, where French has the higher status. The first section of this paper gives

    a brief overview of the social history and language situation in New Caledonia. It

    then examines patterns oflanguage use in multilingual context. Finally it explores

    social attitudes towards French, English and non-dominant vernaculars through a

    questionnaire and interview on the eve of the independence referendum.

Publication Date


  • 2015

Citation


  • Bissoonauth, A. (2015). Pluricentricity and sociolinguistic relationships between French, English and indigenous Languages in New Caledonia. In R. Muhr, D. Marley, H. L. Kretzenbacher & A. Bissoonauth (Eds.), Pluricentricity Languages: New Perspectives in Theory and Description (pp. 273-287). Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Edition.

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9783631664339

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/2143

Book Title


  • Pluricentricity Languages: New Perspectives in Theory and Description

Start Page


  • 273

End Page


  • 287

Place Of Publication


  • Frankfurt am Main