Policies concerning language use are increasingly tested in an age of frequent migration and cultural synthesis. With conflicting factors and changing political climates influencing the policy-makers, Elana Shohamy considers the effects that these policies have on the real people involved. Using examples from the US and UK, she shows how language policies are promoted and imposed, overtly and covertly, across different countries and in different contexts.

Concluding with arguments for a more democratic and open approach to language policy and planning, the final note is one of optimism, suggesting strategies for resistance to language attrition and ways to protect the linguistic rights of groups and individuals.

part I|56 pages

Language, manipulations, policy

chapter 1|17 pages

Expanding language

chapter 2|23 pages

Manipulating languages

chapter 3|12 pages

Expanding language policy

part II|77 pages

Mechanisms affecting de facto language policies

chapter 4|17 pages

Rules and regulations

chapter 5|17 pages

Language education policies

chapter 6|17 pages

Language tests

chapter 7|24 pages

Language in the public space

part III|39 pages

Consequences and reactions

chapter 8|12 pages


chapter 9|18 pages


chapter |7 pages

Epilogue: Language as a free commodity