Code-mixing and code choice: a Hong Kong case study by John Gibbons

By John Gibbons

Code-mixing is a quick constructing niche for these fascinated by bilingualism, sociolinguistics and utilized linguistics. simply because the language phenomena produced at the beginning by means of touch among teams who didn't proportion a language - pidginization and creolization - have proved to be revealing within the learn of moment language improvement and language universals, so additionally the exam of the blending of 2 or extra languages inside bilingual groups is commencing to throw mild on a number of very important concerns. during this ebook John Gibbons makes use of more than a few diversified methods to code-mixing and code selection, evaluates them and makes an attempt to combine them in a composite mode of code selection. The examine is found within the attention-grabbing bilingual neighborhood of Hong Kong.

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Extra info for Code-mixing and code choice: a Hong Kong case study

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In fact, for this type of research, information about the speaker's perceptions of others is more useful than hard data about interlocutors. The language diary technique reduces in several ways the problems of lack of awareness and bias discussed above. First the task is made as objective and concrete as possible, by requiring the recording of well defined factors in columns. This also avoids problems caused by a lack of Page 17 awareness of the totality of crucial factors since the informant does not make judgements concerning factors but records them all.

As stated previously there are two major problems associated with this approach. The first is that the informants may not always be conscious of the totality of their language behaviour; the second is that language can be (and in Hong Kong almost certainly is) an intensely emotional issue, with the consequent possibility of distortion of the informants' view of their own language behaviour. Page 15 Figure 2 Factors constraining code choice for the Buang Source: Sankoff, 1972: 39 Page 16 The other type of data collection most commonly used is observation.

Languages in Hong Kong Cantonese Cantonese is normally classified as a Chinese "dialect". According to Fraenkel (1967: 76) it has some 55 million speakersa significant number. Mandarin and Cantonese are not mutually intelligible (although it is possible for their speakers to develop an understanding of the other's speechsee below). The Cantonese of Hong Kong is fairly close to the Guangzhou (Canton) norm, reflecting mutual influence and the fact that many of Hong Kong's people have their origins in the region around Guangzhou.

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