Materialität und Medialität der sprachlichen Kommunikation - Materiality and Mediality of Linguistic Communication
Akten des 47. Linguistischen Kolloquiums in Olsztyn 2012 - Proceedings of the 47 th Linguistics Colloquium in Olsztyn 2012
Edited By Ewa Zebrowska, Mariola Jaworska and Dirk Steinhoff
This volume encompasses contributions of the 47
Chinese-based lexicon in Singapore English and Singapore-Chinese culture
Adrian Tien (Singapore)
Demographic facts provided by Singapore Government Statistics (http://www.singstat.gov.sg/pubn/catalogue.html#sib) tell a very interesting story of the ethnic, cultural and linguistic make-up of contemporary Singapore. In 2008, 74.7% of the population were Chinese, 13.6% were Malays, 8.9% were Indians and 2.8% belonged to other ethnicities. The latest report on the languages most frequently spoken at home came from 2005 statistics and, according to those, 54% of the population spoke Chinese at home (be it Mandarin or other Chinese dialects), 28.1% spoke English, 13.2% spoke Malay, 4% an Indian language and 4.4% other languages. These statistics reflect, among other things, the significant presence and prominence of the ancestrally Chinese population and their language. At the same time, however, the statistics (at least these particular ones) do not indicate (1) whether “English” in these figures mean “standard English” alone or in fact includes any variety of English (and Singlish, presumably, would be the most widely spoken local variety); (2) whether the distributional figures of languages spoken at home are absolute and mutually exclusive or, in fact, relative (since it is entirely possible given the complexity of the demographic situation that a Singaporean speaks more than one language); and (3) whether languages spoken at home can in fact be clearly delineated from languages spoken elsewhere (since people at work may communicate with each other using either/both the “official” language and/or the “unofficial” language, which may be the same as the language spoken at home).
My own experience...
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