Language loss and language processing : three generations of Dutch migrants in New Zealand
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[S.l. : s.n.]
Number of pages
XII, 260 p.
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ITS Onderwijs: loopbaan en kwaliteitsontwikkeling
This dissertation investigates the relationship between language shift, language loss, and language processing. Three generations of Dutch immigrants to New Zealand were tested to investigate intra- and intergenerational patterns of language use, social networks, perceived ethnolinguistic vitality, self-assessments of L1 and L2 proficiency, and productive and receptive language skills (picture naming and picture-word matching). The results on language use in various domains and language use situations indicate a fast pattern of shift towards the L2 at both the intra- and intergenerational level. In line, productive and receptive language proficiency decline with each generation. In addition, a comparison to a control group in the Netherlands revealed that the first generation informants already show signs of reduced L1 proficiency in the production task. However, receptive skills are still in tact. The self-assessments of L1 proficiency were found to reflect the more objective measures of language proficiency extremely well. All three generations judged Dutch vitality to be lower than British-New Zealand vitality, although the third generation informants rated Dutch vitality higher than the first and second generations. Perceptions of British-New Zealand vitality were related to receptive L1 proficiency. The number of L1 contacts in the social networks was not related to L1 proficiency or maintenance, but there were indications that the number of L1 contacts in the neighbourhood was negatively related to L2 proficiency. L1 use outside the home and a positive attitude toward L1 maintenance were found to be key factors for language maintenance in this three-generational migrant context
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