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Sociolinguistic Transition in Former Eastern Bloc Countries

Two Decades after the Regime Change

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Edited By Marián Sloboda, Petteri Laihonen and Anastassia Zabrodskaja

This volume offers empirical perspectives on the current sociolinguistic situations in former Eastern Bloc countries. Its seventeen chapters analyse phenomena such as language choice, hierarchies and ideologies in multilingualism, language policies, minority languages in new legal, educational, business and migratory contexts, as well as the position of English in the region. The authors use various methodological approaches – including surveys, discourse analyses, descriptions and analyses of linguistic landscapes, and ethnography – in order to deal with sociolinguistic issues in eight countries and seven regions, from Brandenburg, Germany, in the West to Sakhalin, Russia, in the East.

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Krzysztof Przygoński - Political transformation as a trigger for a sociolinguistic revolution in post-socialist Poland: English and its rising power

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Krzysztof Przygoński

Political transformation as a trigger for a sociolinguistic revolution in post-socialist Poland: English and its rising power

1 Introduction

As a result of its political and economic transformation, the sociolinguistic situation of Poland changed dramatically. Revolution seems to be the word that describes best the magnitude of changes that occurred in the Polish language and in the pre-transitional status quo in the power relations between four international languages traditionally taught in Poland (French, German, Russian and English). Ever since 1989, both of them have been under an overwhelming influence of the pervasive English language and ubiquitous American culture.

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