“I Am Not Punjabi, My Parents Are”: Degradation of the Language of Dominant Majority
Keywords:language ideology, linguistic identity, linguicide, ethnic identity, domain of use
Due to social and geographical mobility and globalization, many minority languages in the world are pushed to the periphery. Reasons for such a trend differ among languages. In the case of the Punjabi language, despite being spoken by a major portion of the population, the speakers are gradually disowning it. Considering this gradual shift, the present study explores the predicament of the Punjabi language. The study uses phenomenological design and collects data from Punjabi ethnic students in four different universities in Islamabad. The study uses semi-structured interviews, TV shows, and natural conversations. Findings reveal that the Punjabi speakers themselves disown their language as well as Punjabi identity due to social, economic, religious, and political reasons. Especially women avoid the language more, they do not speak Punjabi with their children, and they reject their Punjabi identity.
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