Publication details [#59677]

Stroud, Christopher and Quentin Emmanuel Williams. 2015. Linguistic citizenship. Language and politics in postnational modernities. Journal of Language and Politics 14 (3) : 406–430.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


A major challenge facing South Africa is that of reconstructing a meaningful and inclusive notion of citizenship in the aftermath of its apartheid past and in the face of narratives of divisiveness that reach back from this past and continue to reverberate in the present. Many of the problems confronting South African social transformation are similar to the rest of the postcolonial world that continues to wrestle with the inherited colonial divide between citizen and subject. This article explores how engagement with diversity and marginalization is taking place across a range of non-institutional and informal political arenas. It elaborates on an approach towards the linguistic practices of the political everyday in terms of a notion of linguistic citizenship and by way of conclusion argues that the contradictions and turmoils of contemporary South Africa require further serious deliberation around alternative notions of citizenship and their semiotics.