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Spousal characteristics and language use at home: Immigrants and their descendants in Canada

TitleSpousal characteristics and language use at home: Immigrants and their descendants in Canada
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsLee, R.
JournalSociological Perspectives
Volume61
Pages874 - 893
Keywordsgeneration status, immigrant integration, international migration, mother tongue, racial and ethnic minorities
Abstract

Whether immigrants and their descendants maintain or lose the mother tongue is central to debates about national and ethnic identities and immigrant integration. This is true in Canada, where language is a defining characteristic of the social and political landscape and large-scale migration has contributed to the country’s linguistic diversity. Whereas theories of linguistic assimilation predict mother-tongue loss in a few generations, interracial, interethnic, or cross-generational marriages may slow this process. This study examines whether official language(s) use at home is associated with spousal characteristics and how this association varies by generation and ethnic ancestry. Spousal characteristics and language use are positively associated, net of ethnic and religious context, parental characteristics, and individual characteristics. The movement toward official language(s) use only at home may be accelerated by spouses with the same first language or educated spouses, but this process can be delayed for individuals in foreign-born and endogamous marriages.

URLhttps://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0731121417753371
Document URLhttps://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0731121417753371
Publication Type
RDC
Themes
Contract ID
Publication language(s)
English