Edited By Kamila Ciepiela
Part One - EMBLEMATIC IDENTITIES
Part One EMBLEMATIC IDENTITIES Costanza Cucchi Università Cattolica di Milano Italy LANGUAGE AND NATIONAL IDENTITY. APPLICATIONS OF HOFSTEDE’S CULTURAL DIMENSIONS Abstract: Hofstede’s cultural dimensions (Hofstede 2001; 2003) have recently been utilized for linguistic research based on the notion of national identity. Since an overview of such research is still lacking, the present paper aims to illustrate, first, how the model was applied and, secondly, to examine the correlations set forth between the cultural dimensions and language in diverse genres. Results indicate that the model was used as a predictive and as an explanatory device of communicative and micro-linguistic features in cross-linguistic studies and in English as a lingua franca. The synthesis of the correlations between the dimensions and languages offered in the paper will hopefully throw new light on the interplay between language and culture and sustain further research. Keywords: Language and culture; Cross-linguistic studies; Cross-cultural studies; ELF; Individualism; Power Distance; Uncertainty Avoidance; Masculinity 1. Introduction As Bjørge (2007: 66) rightly pointed out, “research in the field of sociology and anthropology has identified a number of cultural dimensions that distinguish national cultures”. Despite critiques, among the many existing models Hofstede’s “is the one that has been most extensively applied and validated” in various cultural contexts, probably because the dimensions he identified “have been empirically developed and verified while [other] cultural typologies […] have yet to be empirically validated” (Singh et al. 2003: 65). Hofstede’s framework is, in fact, based on a large body of data obtained through questionnaires. Starting from...
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