Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10497/17829
Title: Functional differentiation: A critique of the bilingual policy in Singapore
Authors: Tan, Charlene H. P. (Charlene Hwee Phio)
Ng, Pak Tee
Keywords: Bilingual policy
English
Functional differentiation
Multicultural policy
Singapore
Issue Date: 2011
Citation: Tan, C., & Ng, P. T. (2011). Functional differentiation: A critique of the bilingual policy in Singapore. Journal of Asian Public Policy, 4(3), 331-341. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17516234.2011.630227
Abstract: This paper critically explores the ideology of the functional differentiation of languages that underpins the bilingual policy in Singapore. This ideology values English for its economic function and the indigenous languages for their role in cultural transmission. In the first part of the paper, we critique the ideology of functional differentiation by discussing two main challenges that arise from the bilingual policy in Singapore. In the second part of the paper, we explain how the ideology of functional differentiation is linked to the multicultural policy adopted by the government. We argue that this multicultural approach emphasises surface culture and is inadequate in enabling the chosen ‘mother tongue languages' to serve as cultural and identity markers for the students. The Singapore case study contributes towards the international literature on the underlying ideology, contemporary issues and perennial challenges surrounding language policy in multicultural societies.
Description: This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Journal of Asian Public Policy. The published version is available online at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17516234.2011.630227
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10497/17829
ISSN: 1751-6234 (print)
1751-6242 (online)
Other Identifiers: 10.1080/17516234.2011.630227
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