Language Attitude and Language Behaviour: the Impact of which is Stronger? Study of International Adoption Situation and Links with Emigration

  • Jogilė Teresa Ramonaitė
Keywords: language attitudes, maintenance of Lithuanian, international adoption, language behaviour


    Language attitudes and language behaviour are important factors for language maintenance in a situation of two languages in one space, especially when one of those languages is the dominating language of the environment and the other is a minority or only a home language, for instance, in case of emigration. The paper deals with language attitudes in an atypical situation of international adoption. It analyses data from a sociolinguistic survey to Italian families who have adopted children from Lithuania. In the situation under study the attitudes cannot influence the language behaviour and this gives a possibility to observe how the language is not maintained and how rapid the process is, despite the positive language attitudes of the adoptive parents.