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Share Paper 2413

Comparing Dominican Linguistic (In)security in the Dominican Republic and in the Diaspora
Eva-María Suárez Büdenbender
148-159 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


Minority immigrant groups are frequently confronted with negative stereotypes in their new home countries. Such prejudicial notions usually stem from historical, socio-cultural, socioeconomic, and racial differences that can also be reflected in the host country's negative attitudes towards the minority's language or accent. These negative attitudes can affect immigrants' linguistic insecurity and self-perception. This study examines the possible emergence of linguistic security among émigrés as compared to those remaining in their native country. The setting for this investigation is Puerto Rico, where a growing minority of immigrants from the Dominican Republic has led to increased contact between these two groups. Whereas Dominicans in the Dominican Republic think that their variant is better than Puerto Rican Spanish, daily contact with this latter variety has made Dominican immigrants aware that the differences between the dialects are less substantial, and they do not perceive one dialect as more prestigious than the other. The same can be said for perceptions of phenotypical differences between natives of both countries. Dominican nationality and self-definition are shown to be resilient throughout the immigration experience.

Published in

Selected Proceedings of the 12th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium
edited by Claudia Borgonovo, Manuel Español-Echevarría, and Philippe Prévost
Table of contents
Printed edition: $270.00