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    From obscure echo to language of the heart: multilinguals' language choices for (emotional) inner speech

    Dewaele, Jean-Marc (2015) From obscure echo to language of the heart: multilinguals' language choices for (emotional) inner speech. Journal of Pragmatics 87 , pp. 1-17. ISSN 0378-2166.

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    To date, relatively little research has been carried out on multilinguals’ language choices for inner speech. The present study compares the language preferences of 1454 adult multilinguals for inner speech and for emotional inner speech in their different languages. A quantitative analysis of self-reported use of up to 5 languages revealed that languages learnt later in life (LX) are used significantly less frequently for emotional inner speech than for inner speech. Statistical analyses on the use of the first language (L1) and various LXs for inner speech and emotional inner speech showed that self-perceived proficiency, general use and socialization were Linked to more frequent use. Context of acquisition of the LX, perceived emotionality of the L1 and LX and age of onset of the LX also had significant effects on frequency of inner speech and emotional inner speech. The effects of age, gender and education were weaker and scattered. The shift towards increased use of an LX for inner emotional speech is interpreted as a sign of conceptual restructuring and of increasing LX embodiment. Just as the L1 can cease to be the language of the heart, an LX can acquire that privileged status.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): inner speech, emotion, multilingualism
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Depositing User: Jean-Marc Dewaele
    Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2015 11:02
    Last Modified: 09 Aug 2023 12:36


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