Variable identities in Brussels. The relation between language learning and identity in a multilingual context.

Evy Ceuleers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In Belgium and Brussels, macro-contextual features such as language policy and language legislation have a profound impact on people s language use and on the way languages are learned. In order to explain this impact the political and economic developments that have determined the current context of learners in Brussels are discussed. Secondly, a number of recent events that are the result of the interplay of language legislation and sociolinguistic mechanisms are presented. These contextual issues are linked to some theoretical insights which allow us to look at: (1) how the specific context of Brussels influences instructed and non-instructed L2 learning; (2) what the implications are for learners identification processes and; (3) how this relates to their L2 learning motivation. These questions are addressed in an empirical study carried out in a Dutch-speaking secondary school in Brussels. The results suggest that adolescents in Dutch-speaking schools in Brussels have variable identity profiles and specific L2 learning motivations, depending on their language use in different contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-309
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development
Volume29
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Keywords

  • second language learning
  • identity
  • motivation
  • multilingual contexts

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