Cohesion, sharing and integration? Migrant languages and cultural spaces in Northern Ireland's urban environment

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Abstract

This article investigates the position of migrant languages in Northern Ireland's two largest cities, Belfast and Derry/Londonderry. The paper comments on how deliberations around public policy objectives in a post-conflict era have led to a broader understanding of cultural identity and consequently to an ‘opening-up’ of urban spaces for speakers of migrant community languages. For such linguistic minorities, museums, libraries, community festivals, arts projects and grass roots community initiatives can be noted as especially important in contributing to higher levels of inclusion and accessibility to urban spaces. Nonetheless, while the debates on such ‘peace-oriented’ policy frameworks have certainly accommodated the wider visibility and use of migrant languages in city spaces, there is more that can be done by planners in these sectors to further enhance opportunities for social cohesion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-205
JournalCurrent Issues in Language Planning
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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