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Covert bilingualism and symbolic competence: Analytical reflections on negotiating insider/outsider positionality in Swedish speech situations

Hult, Francis LU (2014) In Applied Linguistics 35(1). p.63-81
Abstract
Bilinguals often face the challenge of negotiating a range of insider/outsider subject positions when interacting in transnational and intercultural settings. This article takes up the concept of symbolic competence, the awareness of socially situated symbolic resources and the ability to use them to shape interactional contexts, to examine how the author, a Swedish–English bilingual, manages this negotiation. Drawing on principles of the ethnography of communication in concert with the complementary discourse analytic perspective of nexus analysis, ethnographic vignettes are analyzed to explore strategic language choices the author made during specific speech situations in Sweden. It is shown that the concealment of linguistic abilities,... (More)
Bilinguals often face the challenge of negotiating a range of insider/outsider subject positions when interacting in transnational and intercultural settings. This article takes up the concept of symbolic competence, the awareness of socially situated symbolic resources and the ability to use them to shape interactional contexts, to examine how the author, a Swedish–English bilingual, manages this negotiation. Drawing on principles of the ethnography of communication in concert with the complementary discourse analytic perspective of nexus analysis, ethnographic vignettes are analyzed to explore strategic language choices the author made during specific speech situations in Sweden. It is shown that the concealment of linguistic abilities, or covert bilingualism, served as a resource to support the symbolic competence needed to facilitate the presentation of self during social encounters while mitigating the ambiguity of being simultaneously insider and outsider. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Bilingualism, discourse analysis, ethnography of communication, nexus analysis
in
Applied Linguistics
volume
35
issue
1
pages
63 - 81
publisher
Oxford University Press
external identifiers
  • wos:000331270300004
  • scopus:84893310985
ISSN
0142-6001
DOI
10.1093/applin/amt003
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
ca587702-7562-4178-ba33-bc08eb813bb6 (old id 3737139)
date added to LUP
2013-05-13 09:13:42
date last changed
2017-09-10 04:45:28
@article{ca587702-7562-4178-ba33-bc08eb813bb6,
  abstract     = {Bilinguals often face the challenge of negotiating a range of insider/outsider subject positions when interacting in transnational and intercultural settings. This article takes up the concept of symbolic competence, the awareness of socially situated symbolic resources and the ability to use them to shape interactional contexts, to examine how the author, a Swedish–English bilingual, manages this negotiation. Drawing on principles of the ethnography of communication in concert with the complementary discourse analytic perspective of nexus analysis, ethnographic vignettes are analyzed to explore strategic language choices the author made during specific speech situations in Sweden. It is shown that the concealment of linguistic abilities, or covert bilingualism, served as a resource to support the symbolic competence needed to facilitate the presentation of self during social encounters while mitigating the ambiguity of being simultaneously insider and outsider.},
  author       = {Hult, Francis},
  issn         = {0142-6001},
  keyword      = {Bilingualism,discourse analysis,ethnography of communication,nexus analysis},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {63--81},
  publisher    = {Oxford University Press},
  series       = {Applied Linguistics},
  title        = {Covert bilingualism and symbolic competence: Analytical reflections on negotiating insider/outsider positionality in Swedish speech situations},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/applin/amt003},
  volume       = {35},
  year         = {2014},
}