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The Language Management Approach

A Focus on Research Methodology


Edited By Lisa Fairbrother, Jiří Nekvapil and Marián Sloboda

The chapters in this volume reflect the variety of methods that researchers have recently applied in their investigations of "behavior toward language", or language management. The innovative methods introduced in the volume will appeal to researchers interested in different types of introspective interview methodology and discourse analysis, and to those looking for ways of linking language policy to everyday social interactions. The broad spectrum of themes taken up by the authors include the practices of language cultivation agencies, the use of first and second languages in educational contexts, attitudes toward language varieties, the use of language in immigrant communities, and the processes underlying literary criticism.

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On the strategies of managing language problems (István Lanstyák)


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István Lanstyák

On the strategies of managing language problems1

Abstract This chapter utilizes the theoretical framework of LMT to present the strategies of managing language problems on the basis of empirical data coming from various sources. The author differentiates between ‘language management’ and ‘language problem management’, the latter being a narrower concept. After presenting a short definition of the key concepts, the paper deals with various kinds of language management suprastrategies and strategies. One of the important distinctions is the distinction between D-management (management of particular discourses), C-management (management of the circumstances of language use), and I-management (management of ideas, opinions, ideologies concerning languages and language use). One of the tenets of the paper is the assertion that language as a set of features and regularities can be managed through all three, whereas language as an ideological construct can be managed mostly through I-management. However paradoxical it may seem, in the process of language problem management anything but language is managed.

Keywords Language Management Theory, language problems, problem management, management suprastrategy, management strategy

1 Introduction

One of the most important metalinguistic activities which can be effectively analyzed and interpreted within the Language Management Theory (LMT) framework is the management of language problems or language-related social, legal, cultural etc. problems (for the sake of simplicity, I will henceforth refer to all of these as ‘language problems’). As is well known, implementing a solution to a problem...

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