By Sari Pietikäinen, FinlandAlexandra Jaffe, Long BeachHelen Kelly-Holmes, and Nikolas Coupland
Sociolinguistics from the Periphery "presents a fascinating book about change: shifting political, economic and cultural conditions; ephemeral, sometimes even seasonal, multilingualism; and altered imaginaries for minority and indigenous languages and their users."
This book is a timely comparison of the divergent worlds of policy implementation and policy ambition, the messy, often contradictory here-and-now reality of languages in schools and the sharp-edged, shiny, future-oriented representation of languages in policy. Two deep rooted tendencies in Australian political and social life, multiculturalism and Asian regionalism, are represented as key phases in the country’s experimentation with language education planning. Presenting data from a five year ethnographic study combined with a 40 year span of policy analysis, this volume is a rare book length treatment of the chasm between imagined policy and its experienced delivery, and will provide insights that policymakers around the world can draw on.