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Language attitudes and opportunities for speaking a minority language: what lies ahead for Ozelonacaxtla Totonac?

  • Author / Creator
    McGraw, Rachel
  • The present research describes the sociolinguistic situation in the minority indigenous community of San Juan Ozelonacaxtla in the state of Puebla, Mexico. Both Ozelonacaxtla Totonac and Spanish are spoken in the speech community. However, some bilingual parents use only Spanish in the home, ceasing the transmission of their native language to their children and placing the community in the early stages of language shift. Spanish is seen as the language of opportunity in the context of recent and significant social, political, educational, and economic changes in San Juan Ozelonacaxtla. Parents claim they teach their children Spanish because it is more useful than Ozelonacaxtla Totonac, it enables their children to avoid discrimination associated with speaking an indigenous language, it is necessary for their children to do well in school, and it allows for more economic mobility. These factors are accelerating the integration of the community into majority Mexican society.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2009-11
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Arts
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3SW33
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Lam, Yvonne (Modern Languages and Cultural Studies)
    • Beck, David (Linguistics)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Nadasdi, Terry (Linguistics)