By James Crawford
Bilingualism is a truth that many americans nonetheless locate tricky to simply accept; consequently the prominence of English-only activism in U.S. politics. This selection of essays analyzes the resources of the anti-bilingual move, its altering instructions, and its influence on schooling coverage. The booklet additionally explores efforts to withstand the English-only pattern, together with initiatives to revitalize local American languages.
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Extra resources for At war with diversity: US language policy in an age of anxiety
The chairman himself was forced to resign following disclosures about his network of non-profit organizations and their financial backers. The latter included foundations dedicated to promoting eugenics, limiting the reproduction of Third World peoples, distributing white supremacist tracts, and sponsoring research purporting to prove the inferiority of non-whites (Crawford, 1992a). In the aftermath, English-only advocates not surprisingly found their message to be a harder sell with legislators and editorial writers.
Asian Americans, who represented just 3 percent of Monterey Park’s population in 1960, expanded into a majority by 1986. Instead of opening corner grocery stores, as immigrants are expected to do, the newcomers bought out American supermarkets and restocked them with Asian goods. Chinese developers built high-density ‘mini-malls’ catering primarily to immigrant consumers. Not surprisingly, property values and rents soared; many longtime Anglo-Americans found they could no longer afford to live in the city.
Foreigners were welcome to come and share in the abundance of America, the rationale went, provided they met their responsibilities to blend in and adopt our language. John Tanton (1988), chairman of US English and author of the notorious memo, invoked this principle in his own defense: ‘I am not a racist. ’ This appeal was less than convincing, however, from a man who recycled unflattering stereotypes about Latinos. Disclosure of the Tanton (1986) memo had immediate consequences. ’ He asked that his name no longer be used in US English fundraising.
At war with diversity: US language policy in an age of anxiety by James Crawford