Publication Details

Bilbatua, L. & Ellis, E. M. 2011, 'Bilingual identity: language and cultural shift in the experience of a Basque-Spanish immigrant to Australia', Voces Hispanas, vol. 8, pp. 10-15.


This is a very personal account of a Spanish immigrant, Nerea, achieving bilingualism in Wollongong, NSW. The story raises questions of the complex development of identity, changing awareness of sociocultural practices in each language, and of the role played by attitudes in the surrounding community to a person’s bilingualism. This article is in two parts: in the first part Nerea’s story is told in her own voice, and in the second the authors connect Nerea’s individual experience to wider social patterns concerning bilingualism, identity and aspects of recent immigration to Australia.