LING-310 Language and Social Justice
Fall for 2017-2018
Participants in this course will explore how language diversity, particularly diversity related to today’s multilingualism, contributes to marginalization that puts people’s rights and well-being in jeopardy across the following domains: access to employment, quality of schooling, treatment by the legal system, right to health, and participation in public life. A sustained focus will be on the language diversity of immigrant groups and indigenous peoples, who are often involved in processes of learning and unlearning multiple languages across their life span, and whose “different” language repertoires intersect with ethnicity, race, gender, socioeconomic class, and other markers of identity to create deep vulnerabilities and to compound injustices. We will study both ideological and micro-interactional processes by which language is implicated in socially unjust practices across key realms of life, and particularly in the context of transnational mobility. The course seeks to help students (a) build capacity for understanding, confronting, and disrupting language-related injustice and (b) develop personal strategies for affirming human language rights and becoming informed advocates of language diversity and multilingualism.
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