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Title: Bilingual Education with English as an Official Language: Sociocultural Implications
Authors: Pakir, A. 
Issue Date: 1999
Citation: Pakir, A. (1999). Bilingual Education with English as an Official Language: Sociocultural Implications. Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: In Singapore, English is highly promoted & taught in schools along with one or more of the other dominant languages spoken in the country, including Malay, Mandarin, & Tamil. English was chosen as the neutral, working language for the country, since it does not natively belong to any of the ethnic groups. Furthermore, given that the island is so small, it was decided that English should be taught so that residents would be able to communicate with the rest of the world. Despite the official situation, English is treated with some ambivalence by Singapore natives. Some communities, such as the Malay, have been able to maintain their native language through home usage, but others, such as the Tamils, have begun to replace Tamil with English. The acquisition of English is also problematic because it has begun to signal a social class divide. It is suggested that Singapore would benefit from using English as a "glocal" language, one which allows them to communicate globally, but which retains much influence from the local culture. L. Davidson.
Source Title: Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics
ISSN: 01867207
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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