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Title: Linguistic attitudes and perceptions as indicators of cultural identity : a study of Maltese youth
Authors: Cassar, Anne Marie (2001)
Keywords: Group identity -- Malta
Identity (Psychology) -- Malta
Language and culture -- Malta
Issue Date: 2001
Citation: Cassar, A. M. (2001). Linguistic attitudes and perceptions as indicators of cultural identity : a study of Maltese youth (Bachelor’s dissertation).
Abstract: This study considers language as constituting part of an individual's and a nation's cultural identity. An individual's behaviour, attitudes and perceptions towards his/her native tongue form part of his/her cultural identity and may be analogous to national pride. This study aims to explore the perceptions that Maltese youth have of their national and cultural identity, through researching their opinions about their language. Hence this study principally focuses on local interactions between the Maltese and English languages, and attempts to ascertain which determinants may influence linguistic attitudes. Drawing on various literature, this study focuses on theories of national awareness and how linguistic functionalism, especially bilingualism and globlisation, may affect such. The literary review also looks at the local context through presenting the historical development of the Maltese nation and language, as well as current local linguistic patterns. Through responses acquired from a questionnaire-based survey and semi-structured interviews, this study determines that English satisfies the sample's instrumental needs, whilst Maltese satisfies their sentimental requirements. Moreover, this study establishes that globalising and instrumental factors are causing a double consciousness within this sample, hence creating separate, unequal, power domains for either language. In turn, this may be creating uncertainty that may lead to a cultural void. I chose this area because through language, I would like to examine the contemporary roles of cultural identity and national pride. I believe this research needs to be undertaken because, unless awareness is fostered, globalisation may irrevocably alter our national and cultural individuality, thus eradicating that uniqueness which this sample considers so important for our cultural and national identity.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacSoW - 1997-2010
Dissertations - FacSoWYCS - 1998-2010

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