Language maintenance in friendships: second-generation German, Greek, and Vietnamese migrants

Joanne Winter, Anne Pauwels

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    Our contribution explores the language maintenance (LM) patterns of children of migrants (second-generation) to Australia from three ethnolinguistic groups — German, Greek, and Vietnamese — in their same-age peer friendships. Focusing on the affective social relationship of “friendship” imagined as a dynamic fluid site of independence and a locale for identity formation, we scrutinize it as a pressure point for LM. The macro survey trends indicate that languages other than English (LOTE) are used in the friendship domain but with differing participations. Follow-up in-depth interviews reveal subtleties and complexities for LM practices. Co-presence of bilingual others in friendships proves to be a minimum but not sufficient condition for LM, particularly for German men and Greek women. Hyphenated belongings — for example, Vietnamese-, Greek-, German-Australians — construct varying LM alignments that reflect shared histories and authenticities (the migration experience) and the localizing of settlement (Australia).
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)123-139
    JournalInternational Journal of the Sociology of Language
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2006


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