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Monolingualism and multilingualism in Australia and Germany

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  1. Monolingualism and multilingualism in Australia and Germany Michael Clyne

  2. Non-indigenous history of Australia (since 1788) – Tension between • English monolingualism as symbol of Empire loyalism or Australian nationalism • and multilingualism as symbol of multiculturalism stemming from migration.

  3. 19 C – more bilingual ed than 21st so far • Media/ business incl tenders • International conflicts -> aggressive assimilation policy – 7 decades (One nation one language ideology) 1970s – pendulum swing (a) Multicultural policies (b)

  4. 1970s – pendulum swing • (a) Multicultural policies • (b) Pressure for national languages policy accepted by government (bipartisan) • Senate inquiry 1982-84 and Policy (1987) • English, LM, LL, multilingual service provision; research institute

  5. Remaining today: Preceded NPL - Open-ended: • Matriculation in over 40 languages (some states with bonus scores) • Schools of languages to teach them • Govt. multilingual radio (68 langs.) and • Multicultural TV – English sub-titled films; news • Telephone interpreter service • Census questions on language use.

  6. Language teaching in schools • Low time allocation • Low participation esp. senior years • Inadequate teacher supply and quality • Inferior status of LOTEs /Monolingual mindset • Because English is national language, choice of languages BUT problems connected with that (Policy changes)

  7. Germany • Migrant children discouraged by some schools from speaking L1. (Herbert Hoover School Case, 2006) • BUT: Some policy recommendations transcend monolingual habitus: • German National Integration Plan 2006 – recommends promotion of multilingualism, acquisition of German plus maintenance of heritage languages with certification • Hamburger Modell (2007) argues for 2-way integration

  8. 2005 Mikrozensus – 44.8% of all children 6-18 have migrant background (1st, 2nd generation). • No census data on languages (citizenship and some on birthplace) – problems:

  9. Minority language speakers (Kurdish, Chinese) • 2nd, 3rd generation with German passports • Ethnic Germans from Poland, Russia • Stateless, other • Berlin: 57,000 Tu (1988-2005), 11,500 Ru

  10. Multilingualism promoted through FL teaching • 1st foreign language increasingly English in all Länder exc. Saarland – including Grade 3 and early years of primary (superseding elective migrant langs and langs of neighbouring countries and other compulsory language programs eg in Bavaria). • Rationale – continuity to Hauptschule • Weinrich plan (Eng as L3) and Eng as basis for multilingual studies not taken seriously.

  11. European schools – 50:50 modified • Content based programs mainly Eng. • Some language programs in languages with migrant populations (Sp, Tu, It, Russ, Port) • Limited use of community resources (esp Ru) • Exceptional: NRW 19 migrant langs in 100 schools with/without migr. pop. as L3 • Anomaly: L2 (Yr 7) for home bckgnd, L3 (Yr 9)

  12. Academic language – MA, BA courses in Eng. (Originally intended to be bilingual) • Humboldt fellows regret having little opportunity to use their German • Mocikat et al – Plea to give more support for foreign academics. Students to integrate linguistically • German companies – English increasingly used : amalgamations, foreign investors, foreign staff

  13. Germans tend to use English with speakers of other languages, thereby weakening German’s status (Cf. Merkel, Westerwelle) despite the Graddol prediction on English. • 2040 – Australia multilingual because of migration, Germany because of SLA?

  14. Germany: Languages firmly embedded in curriculum • More than one FL • European schools (bilingual) • Australia: Choice of main languages • (English national language) • Community language resources valued to a point

  15. Multiple language examinations • Government Schools of Languages • Official multilingual media • Past: Pluralist change easier • Esp. in teaching of community languages to everyone.