Adult ethnic minorities’ mainstream language proficiency: Cultural knowledge, cultural identification, and language use attitudes

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2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examines how immigrants' enculturation/acculturation, language use, and parenting were linked to their oral and written language proficiencies in multilingual Hong Kong (speak English, speak Cantonese, read and write Chinese). Participants in this study included 655 immigrant parents (from Pakistan, Nepal, India, Philippines, Indonesia, Kenya, Bangladesh, Malaysia, and others). Structural equation modelling of survey responses showed that parents with greater ethnic enculturation or host acculturations reported better mainstream language skills (speak English, speak Cantonese, read and write Chinese). More heritage cultural knowledge was linked to better spoken Cantonese. Greater cultural identification with their own ethnic community was linked to better spoken English. Those with more local Chinese cultural knowledge reported better Chinese reading and writing and permissive parenting, which contributed to better English speaking. Compared to immigrant fathers, immigrant mothers reported lower Cantonese and English speaking proficiencies. Together, these results show that greater cultural identification with the ethnic community was linked to greater English-speaking skills. Copyright © 2023 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)385-405
JournalLanguage, Culture and Curriculum
Volume36
Issue number4
Early online dateMay 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Citation

Gu, M. M., Chiu, M. M., & Li, J. Z. (2023). Adult ethnic minorities’ mainstream language proficiency: Cultural knowledge, cultural identification, and language use attitudes. Language, Culture and Curriculum, 36(4), 385-405. https://doi.org/10.1080/07908318.2023.2210287

Keywords

  • Cultural knowledge
  • Cultural identification
  • Language use attitudes
  • Mainstream language learning
  • Immigrant parents

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