Title

The Second Annual Corsican Spelling Contest: Orthography and Ideology

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-1-1996

Department

Anthropology and Sociology

Abstract

In this article, I interpret a broadcast Corsican spelling contest as evidence of both resistance and accommodation to dominant models of language as an autonomous, authoritative code. First, the broadcast illustrates that efforts to promote the minority language by focusing on written standards conflict with everyday linguistic practices and cultural values and can create new forms of cultural alienation. Second, broadcast participants powerfully assert the countervalues of intimacy and egalitarianism associated with Corsican. This resistance, however, is only partial in that it does not escape the diglossic compartmentalization of domains of linguistic use and value; it therefore fails to take into account the mixed nature of both Corsican identity and everyday language practices.

Publication Title

American Ethnologist

Volume

23

Issue

4

First Page

816

Last Page

835