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Fostering multilingualism in Swedish schools – intentions and realities
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
2011 (English)In: Young Urban Swedish: Variation and change in multilingual settings / [ed] Roger Källström and Inger Lindberg, Gothenburg: Department of Swedish Language, University of Gothenburg , 2011, 149-172 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The continuous cast of ethnic and linguistic diversity in negative terms in Swedish schools reveals systematic mismatches between intended policies and everyday classroom practices. In this article, failures in terms of the implementation of language education policy are attributed to languagepolicies not being sufficiently attuned to the sociolinguistic realities in multilingual contexts and at the same time disregarding issues of power and identity. With reference to findings in critical, ethnographic research, it is suggested that strategic essentialism at a general policy level as well as linguicism as a manifestation of prevailing deficit ideologies at an institutional and individual level of practice may contribute to an unresolved tension between the official policy and local educational practices. It is concluded that a number of challenges remain to be addressed before the vision of equal access to linguistic resources in Swedish schools can be realized.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Gothenburg: Department of Swedish Language, University of Gothenburg , 2011. 149-172 p.
, Göteborgsstudier i nordisk språkvetenskap, ISSN 1652-3105 ; 14
Keyword [en]
language education policy, mother-tongue tuition, Swedish as a second language, strategic essentialism, deficit ideologies, linguicism
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-81993ISBN: 978-91-87850-42-4OAI: diva2:564951
Språk och språkbruk bland ungdomar i flerspråkiga storstadsmiljöer
Riksbankens Jubileumsfond
Available from: 2012-11-05 Created: 2012-11-05 Last updated: 2012-11-06Bibliographically approved

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