Language and attitude shift of young Mauritians in secondary education

Publication Name

Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development


This study investigated the changing patterns of language use and language attitudes of younger generations of Mauritians over the last two decades. This article discusses the shift in language attitudes of students in secondary education with special emphasis on Kreol*, taught since 2012 in primary schools and from 2018 in secondary schools. A comparison with results from earlier studies suggests a positive attitude shift towards Kreol in education as well as an acceptance of multilingualism and multiculturalism as an integral part of being Mauritian. Asian heritage languages lag behind in the multi-diglossic patterns of language use. Nonetheless, despite a steady decline in the home domain, students choose to study them in schools and attitudes towards them highlight a strong sense of cultural and religious attachment to ancestral heritage. *The word Kreol refers to Mauritian Creole. The term Creole is used to refer to the type of language and members of the Creole community, who are descendants of former slaves and mixed parentage.

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