Loving in two languages: Language choice and emotionality in family communication of Kazakh bilinguals

Obrazek miniatury
Pawliszko, Judyta
Tytuł czasopisma
Tytuł tomu
Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego
Highlighting the intrinsic difficulty in trying to measure a concept as elusive as emotion, the article brings together the latest wave of research in the field of both sociological and cultural studies on bilinguals’ emotional responses. Irrefutably, one arena in which emotional concomitants of language are keenly experienced is in bilinguals’ sense that there is no greater emotional significance than the ones related to the speakers’ first and second languages. The above raises interesting possibilities for explorations in the area of the concept of bilingualism; specifically: What are the emotion-related factors in language choice of bilingual family members? Do all bilinguals prefer their first language to express affect? Should the first language be perceived as the language of emotions and the second as the language of detachment? What are bilinguals’ linguistic preferences while articulating emotionality in a family context? The initial step of this article is to expound the sociolinguistically-conditioned phenomenon of language dominance and expressions of emotionality within Kazakh family units. In what follows, not only is a review of the existing studies on language dominance offered, but the present article also discusses the author’s own investigation drawing on 54 Kazakh students and their parents’ responses to a questionnaire on bilingualism and emotions. From the wealth of data provided, two core themes are to be identified: distinctive factors affecting Kazakh-Russian bilinguals’ language choice as well as the emotionality characteristics of first and the second languages in family-context communication. Returning to reflection on emotion, vivid quotes from the respondents add a vibrant human dimension to this account by illustrating the inevitable continuum between sociolinguistic and cultural aspects.
Słowa kluczowe
emotions , perceived emotionality , language dominance , bilingual families
Studia Anglica Resoviensia T. 13 (2016), s. 55–67