Reference : On socially constructed aspects of language (in)competence: Raising critical languag...
Scientific congresses, symposiums and conference proceedings : Unpublished conference
Arts & humanities : Languages & linguistics
Migration and Inclusive Societies
On socially constructed aspects of language (in)competence: Raising critical language awareness in the multilingual workplace
Lovrits, Veronika mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences (FHSE) > Department of Humanities (DHUM) >]
FHSE PhD Conference in Social Sciences
University of Luxembourg
[en] language competence ; multilingualism ; power
[en] In this theoretical contribution, I invite fellow researchers and managers to engage in a reflection on what is perceived as a competent language use at work. The objective is to open a broader discussion on seemingly obvious assumptions that may skew our understanding of everyday language practices. Critically reflected research review will point out to limitations of commonplace perspectives that mirror in managerial research and have implications for practice. Two questions will be discussed to raise critical awareness in the multilingual workplace: what linguistic norm sets the bar for the appropriateness of language use in the workplace, and whose interests does the language norm represent. This way, three problematic topics will be brought to attention: non acknowledged proliferation of linguistic concepts from education to workplace; questionable aptness of referring to standard language norm; and unacknowledged power plays fuelled by competing pragmatic needs of communicative partners. A reflection of power relations linked to norms and needs in the workplace may subsequently support a variety of practical managerial responses – ranging from a symbolic social acceptance of nonstandard language use to a decision to hire a professional linguistic service.
Researchers ; Professionals ; Students

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