Setting and Language Attitudes in a Creole Context
This article reports on a set of language attitude experiments undertaken in Belize in 2013--2014. The experiments tested attitudes toward Belizean Kriol in two different situational settings among 96 Belizean university students, exploring the extent to which experimental 'setting' had an effect on survey results. We administered verbal guise tests to 48 university students in classroom settings at the University of Belize campuses in Belize City and Punta Gorda. We then administered the same tests to 48 students in non-classroom settings in these same two cities. We found significant differences in both sets of results, with classroom participants registering stronger preferences for Belize City Kriol in status and solidarity traits. Our results add to a small but important body of literature in which setting is shown to influence language attitudes, and they provide support for an understanding of the quantitative survey as a meaning-making activity.
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