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Bilingualism as Interactional Practices

Joseph Gafaranga

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Foregrounds the practical usefulness of bilingualism, with specific reference to talk organisation

Research on bilingualism and on code-switching in particular has traditionally been geared towards rehabilitating bilingualism and bilingual language use. From being seen as a sign of lack of competence, code-switching is now seen as a sign of high competence in the languages involved. However, this rehabilitation of bilingualism raises an entirely new problem: Where to from here? How can the study of bilingualism continue to be interesting and relevant?

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I: Introduction

II: The Rehabilitation of Code-Switching

III: An Inductive Approach to Bilingualism As Interactional Practices

IV: Language Choice and Speech Representation in Bilingual Interaction

V: Language Choice and Conversational Repair in Bilingual Conversation

VI: Language Choice and Appositive Structures in Written Texts In Rwanda

VII: Summary and Conclusion

About the Author

Joseph Gafaranga is Senior Lecturer in the School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences at the University of Edinburgh.


This latest book of Gafaranga’s builds on his innovative research over many years and opens up a new field of enquiry that raises fundamental questions about the nature of bilingualism and its consequences for individuals and societies. It is rich in empirical data and creative ideas, and will appeal to a wide range of readers.

Li Wei, UCL Centre for Applied Linguistics, University College London

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