Can Language Politics Ensure Languages Survival? Evidence from Italy

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at
Sat Nov 8 14:29:53 UTC 2008

Can Language Politics Ensure Languages Survival? Evidence from Italy
Posted by Callier Library on November 7, 2008

In light of the minority language revitalization trend, which has
spread throughout Europe, encouraged by International and European
legislation, at the end of the last century, an Italian law was
approved to give a national framework to minority language
preservation and renaissance. The status and prestige of minority
languages thus appeared to be strengthened, though several theoretical
and practical problems continue to impede national implementation of
the law. Some of these problems – the different language minorities
present in Italy, the linguistic variety that should be used in public
settings and the nature of the language that is the object of the
national language policy – are examined in this article. The purpose
of this article is to consider the pros and cons of Italian language
policies and politics through case studies representative of Italian
sociolinguistic diversity, thus highlighting the roadblocks to
protecting minority languages.

from Language and Linguistics Compass


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