© 2006

Europe and the Politics of Language

Citizens, Migrants and Outsiders


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 1-19
  3. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 20-39
  4. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 40-56
  5. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 81-105
  6. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 106-125
  7. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 126-146
  8. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 147-167
  9. Máiréad Nic Craith
    Pages 168-187
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 188-217

About this book


Do political boundaries impact on concepts of language? How significant is language for citizenship in contemporary Europe? Can disputed languages acquire full status? Should non-European languages receive recognition from the EU? These are among the many questions explored in this new study of official, regional and disputed languages in an ever-changing European context. Broad policy issues and the performance of the range of instruments of policy at local, national and European levels are illustrated with reference to case studies across Europe.


Citizenship European Union (EU) identity language Lingua franca

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Academy for Irish Cultural HeritagesUniversity of UlsterUK

About the authors

MÁIRÉAD NIC CRAITH is Professor of Irish Culture and Language at the University of Ulster, UK. She has published extensively on languages and cultures in Europe and was joint winner of the 2004 Ruth Jena Michaelis Research Prize for folk life. Máiréad has worked closely with different European organizations including the European Bureau for Lesser-Used Languages.

Bibliographic information

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' outstanding contribution to the field of language policy and planning...This is ahighly recommended bookfor graduate and upper-division undergraduate courses, written in a clear and very persuasive style that reflects Nic Craith's extensive knowledge of European realities and her long-term commitment to the idea of expanded human rights.' - Eva Yerendé, Language Policy

' up-to-date, well-researched and well-expressed volume...dealing at length with traditionally ignored matters - nomads, contested languages, cross-border situations...These are new, European issues, and the book is excellent at identifying them.' - Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development

'It shows how the study of language planning can offer a deeper understanding of social disparities in a broader sense and how a more intensive commitment to this field of research could make an important contribution to a more equitable and democratic Europe.' - Journal of Sociolinguistics

'Mairead Nic Craith takes readers on a vicarious European tour, one which includes an array of cultures and a cacophony of languages and is illuminating to the sociolinguistic issues that are found within the European Union.' - Education Review

'This is an ambitious book...Its focus is on Europe but its potential influenceand contribution go much wider, as the politics of language is present everywhere.' - International Journal of Applied Linguistics

'I would recommend the book as an addition to a syllabus for an advanced undergraduate or graduate-level class on

European studies or language policy... it would serve as a basis for engaging students in a discussion and critique of current laws, practices and ideological positions on languages and language politics in Europe.' - Bridget Goodman, Current Issues in Language Planning

Mairead Nic Craith deals with the diverse issues involved in a distinctive and up-to-date manner. Thus, she examines the complex polititcs of language at various political-geographical scales... [her] academically authoritative but readable book provides a wide range of insights into why many people continue to feel a deep attachment to their native and/or national tongues... this authoritative book can be usefully read with interest and ease by the serious academic, the undergraduate student and any literate lay reader interested in how a whole range of languiage issues continue to influence politics in contemporary Europe and will continue to do so.' Mark Wise, Ethnopolitics