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Bengali-English in East London

Rasinger, Sebastian M.

Bengali-English in East London

A Study in Urban Multilingualism

Series: Contemporary Studies in Descriptive Linguistics - Volume 11

Year of Publication: 2007

Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2007. 270 pp., num. fig. and tables
ISBN 978-3-03911-036-0 pb.  (Softcover)

Weight: 0.400 kg, 0.882 lbs

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Book synopsis

Following two major waves of immigration after World War II, the Bangladeshi community in the East London borough of Tower Hamlets is now one of the largest in the Bangladeshi diaspora, counting some 65,000 people. This is the first in-depth study of language and language-use within this Bangladeshi community. Based on a corpus of spontaneous speech data collected within the area, it provides the reader with an overview of the linguistic characteristics of ‘Bengali-English’ as well as patterns of language-use.
This book focuses on three areas: first, following the tradition of similar studies of the language of minority groups, an analysis of Bengali-English morphosyntax provides a detailed description of its morphosyntactic properties and the different developmental stages learners pass through. Second, a sociolinguistic analysis of the influence of social and psychological factors on the language and its speakers is presented. And last, based on quantitative survey data, and supported by qualitative data obtained through ethnographic interviews, the study evaluates the issues of identity and ethnolinguistic vitality within the Bangladeshi community.


Contents: Tower Hamlets and the Bengali community – Analytic framework: Describing Bengali-English – Methodological Issues – Analysis of six syntactic categories – Syntactic development and overall performance – A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Bengali-English – Ethnolinguistic vitality.

About the author(s)/editor(s)

The Author: Sebastian M. Rasinger is a lecturer in Applied Linguistics and English Language at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, having previously worked at the University of Sussex, Roehampton University and the University of Westminster. He holds a D.Phil. in Linguistics and a Postgraduate Certificate in Social Research Methods from the University of Sussex. His primary research interests are in the area of urban multilingualism, particularly second language acquisition and language-use in migrant communities, and language and identity.


Contemporary Studies in Descriptive Linguistics. Vol. 11
Edited by Graeme Davis and Karl A. Bernhardt