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2017-18

Carlos Oliveras

Research Interests: bilingualism/multilingualism, linguistic identity, linguistic policy and pedagogy, second/third language acquisition, sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics, philosophy of language, development and use of slang/youth language, linguistic diasporas

Biography: Growing up in New York in a bilingual family and later teaching in South Korea, I became aware of the particular difficulties that multilingual/multicultural students face on a daily basis in traditionally monolingual societies (or rather, societies whose sociocultural values and epistemological ideals derive from a monolingual paradigm). These difficulties in turn tend to heavily influence students' development in both the academic and social realms. While much research has been done on multilinguals in regards to their cognitive abilities and strategies for language learning, taking these findings and applying them to real world scenarios is still a necessary task. My research will examine strategies for incorporating and cultivating mulinguality and multicompetence into traditionally monolingual societies, particularly where language has acted as a unifying force and where the presence of other languages is not always seen in a positive light.

The reality of globalization demands that we pay attention to the needs of multilingual and multicultural individuals, and perhaps take another look at the history of attitudes and policies that tend to favor monolinguals in a world where multilinguality makes more sense by the day.

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