‘We’re Not Fully Welsh’: Hierarchies of Belonging and ‘New’ Speakers of Welsh

  • Charlotte Selleck


This chapter addresses and seeks to problematise the concept of the ‘new’ and ‘learner’ speaker from the standpoint of a situated, ethnographic analysis and draws on research conducted in two contrasting secondary schools in south-west Wales: an English-medium school and a designated Welsh-medium school. The focus in this chapter lies in Ysgol Ardwyn, an English-medium school where only 12 per cent of students reported speaking Welsh as first language or to a corresponding standard, and where approximately 88 per cent of the students can therefore be considered as ‘new’ or ‘learner’ speakers of Welsh. The intention is to understand how students at this English-medium school orientate to, contest, and re-define what it means to be ‘Welsh’ and ‘English’ and how they construct their own legitimacy as individuals, as language users, and as speakers of a minority language.


Welsh Ethnography New speaker Education 


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charlotte Selleck
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries and EducationUniversity of the West of EnglandBristolUK

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