Publication details [#63033]

Fukuda, Makiko. 2017. Language use in the context of double minority: the case of Japanese–Catalan/Spanish families in Catalonia. The International Journal of Multilingualism 14 (4) : 401–418.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Language as a subject
Place, Publisher


This inquiry examines language use in Japanese–Catalan/Spanish families in Catalonia with a special attention to Japanese. In a community like Catalonia wherein two languages of different status are in conflict within its own territory, the capacity of families to preserve a socially ‘weaker’ language and transmit yet another language that does not have an official status within the community raises an important question: how do these cross-linguistic families cope with a ‘double minority context’ in terms of organising their language use within the family? Exploring the data gathered via a questionnaire survey conducted with 29 Japanese–Catalan/Spanish-speaking families living in Catalonia disclosed that the parents in said families adopted a mostly monolingual use of Spanish; however, this practice does not influence the families’ Catalan and Japanese use. Not establishing a single common language for the family may be one of the strategies to combat the threat to minority languages. In general, especially for the survey participants, Catalan and Japanese remain significantly employed. The inquiry also found that sibling existence can affect language-use patterns between parent and child(ren), with monolingual practices tending to be employed in single-child families.