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Language and Social Change in Central EuropeDiscourses on Policy, Identity and the German Language$
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Patrick Stevenson and Jenny Carl

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780748635986

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748635986.001.0001

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Language (Auto)biographies: Narrating Multilingual Selves

Language (Auto)biographies: Narrating Multilingual Selves

(p.127) 5 Language (Auto)biographies: Narrating Multilingual Selves
Language and Social Change in Central Europe

Patrick Stevenson

Jenny Carl

Edinburgh University Press

Chapters 5 and 6 draw on the same corpus of material (individual interviews with German-speakers in Hungary and the Czech Republic) but in different ways and for different purposes. In this chapter, the authors look closely at ways in which narrators make experiences with language an organizing/ structural element in their life stories: what is it about ‘my’ encounters with different languages – their evaluations, the times and places associated with their use, their possibilities and limitations/ constraints – that have made my ‘life’ what it (in my estimation) is or has become, as opposed to what it might have been?

Keywords:   Biographical interviews, Language biographies, Life stories, Hungary, Czech Republic, German language, German-speakers

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