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The Russian Language Outside the NationSpeakers and Identities$
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Lara Ryazanova-Clarke

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748668458

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748668458.001.0001

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Ethnolinguistic Vitality and Acculturation Orientations of Russian Speakers in Estonia

Ethnolinguistic Vitality and Acculturation Orientations of Russian Speakers in Estonia

Chapter:
(p.166) Chapter 6 Ethnolinguistic Vitality and Acculturation Orientations of Russian Speakers in Estonia
Source:
The Russian Language Outside the Nation
Author(s):

Martin Ehala

Anastassia Zabrodskaja

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748668458.003.0007

The chapter explores ethnic and linguistic affiliations and identity construction by Russian speakers in Estonia. It assumes the ethnolingusitic vitality paradigm and triangulates a quantitative study with the data obtained from focus group interviews about Russian speakers’ reflections on their ethnic and linguistic identities and intergroup relations in Estonia. The study outlines several subgroups amongst Estonian russophones, characterised by a combination of following variables: perceived strength differential, intergroup distance, utilitarianism and intergroup discordance. It concludes that Russian speakers living in Estonia do not form a single unitary category which has a uniform value system and linguo-social attitudes. Sub-groups differ significantly, from those having a tendency towards language shift and, associated with it, social mobility, to those with a limited contact with the Estonian-speakers and resistance towards integration into the Estonian-speaking society.

Keywords:   Russian language, Estonia, ethnolinguistic vitality, minority

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