Linguistics and Colonialism: little treatise on glottophagy

Ingediend door Virginia Grover op do, 06/20/2019 - 23:44
Author name(s), initial(s)
Calvet, Louis-Jean
Title in the original language
Linguistique et Colonialisme: petit traité de glottophagie
An abstract in English
This book deals with the relationships between linguistics and colonialism, focusing primarily on France and the francophone world. It outlines how, during the colonial era, relationships of linguistic difference were translated into relationships of ‘superiority’. This supposed ‘superiority’ was then used as a justification of the colonial enterprise, and to maintain colonizers’ languages after the independence of the colonies. Calvet also discusses how within France itself, regional and minority languages were subjected to linguistic imperialism as part of nation-building. He concludes by suggesting that in the neo-colonial era, “la francophonie” is a thinly-veiled vehicle for maintaining political and economic power in the former colonies.
Annotation in English
Louis-Jean Calvet is a professor (Sorbonne; Aix-en-Provence) of linguistics and sociolinguistics with a considerable international research and publication record. This book has a strong focus on power relationships and the political economy, and is useful in elucidating language ideologies, the power-related value systems underpinning them, and their links to the colonial era.
Original language
Full reference in original language
Linguistique et colonialisme : Petit traité de glottophagie
CALVET, Louis-Jean, 1974, Linguistique et colonialisme : Petit traité de glottophagie. Editions Payot, Paris.
(Later editions: 1979/1988/2002 Payot & Rivages)