Learning Insular Nordic Languages: Comparative Perspectives on Migrants’ Experiences Learning Faroese and Icelandic

Lara Hoffmann, Anna-Elisabeth Holm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Abstract

This article explores migrants’ language learning experiences in two small language communities in the West Nordic Region. We provide a comparative perspective based on an online survey and ethnographic interviews conducted in Iceland and qualitative research conducted in the Faroe Islands. A major finding from this study is that investment in language learning is a highly situated type of activity, which is contingent on personal circumstances, and on structural conditions. Prevailing language ideologies, such as purism and authenticity, can pose constraints on the language learning process among learners who are initially motivated to learn the language. Results show that many migrants follow a utilitarian approach to learning and perceived usefulness of languages influences participants’ linguistic choices. A lack of opportunities for language learning has been mentioned by learners in both places we investigate.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-275
Number of pages17
JournalNordic Journal of Migration Research
Volume12
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sept 2022

Keywords

  • language learning
  • migration
  • superdivisity
  • inclusion
  • Iceland
  • The Faroe Islands

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