The discourses of lào yīngwén: Resistance to and subversion of the normative status of English in Taiwan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Analyzing language attitudes toward English in Taiwan, this chapter explores the slang term lao yingwen, roughly meaning 'to speak Eng-lish fluently (in a showy manner)', often with a jocular and disapproving connotation. The analysis is based on data collected from well-known bloggers' posts about lao yingwen. These data are used to investigate the subversive reactions to the normative status of English as a global language and as a symbol of workplace competitiveness. In other words, these posts represent competing discourses on the use of English in a non-English, sinophone environment. The use of English becomes more widespread globally, and this chapter contributes to a general under-standing of the many ways in which English is discursively constructed and ideologically represented as playing particular roles and indexing particular identities, personae, or images in various local contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLanguage Diversity in the Sinophone World
Subtitle of host publicationHistorical Trajectories, Language Planning, and Multilingual Practices
PublisherTaylor and Francis AS
Pages229-249
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781003049890
ISBN (Print)9780367504519
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Oct 7

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)

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