A Comparative Study of Language Policies for Minorities in Italy vs. Macedonia

Agim Poshka, Emilia Conforti


This article analyses language rights in the larger language context between Italy, a country who is well established in language minority rights sphere in European Union and Republic of Macedonia. Language diversity is an on-going process impacted by migration and globalization. In this regard, this paper analyses the language policy development of the same language but in two different context. The first scenario is Arbreshi/Albaninan language spoken in Southern Italy after their immigration from Albania in the 15th century, and the Albanian language spoken in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Although it is the same language, the dynamics of globalization, absence of economic opportunities, local and the international political context and the status of a minority language in both countries have stirred the same language in different directions in Italy and Macedonia. The study investigates the possible scenarios that these languages could be considered endangered as a result of assimilation in Southern Italy or massive emigration which the case in Macedonia is. The biggest challenges seem to be the disability to fight in the aggressive economic race and are lacking vitality and policy mechanisms to survive. The study investigates how languages are overpowered because they do not present an economic factor in their community and as a consequence they first lose their rank in the local community and consequently they lose their chance for revitalization The paper also analyses the current legal status of these languages in both aforementioned countries and possible scenarios of being endangered languages as a result of urbanization and economic competition in this globalized reality.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v11i2.14753

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