Linguistic Recognition in Deeply Divided Societies: Antagonism or Reconciliation?



This chapter evaluates the routes of recognition for minority languages in deeply divided societies. With reference to regions such as Guatemala, Rwanda, Ireland, the former Yugoslavia, the Ukraine and others, it critically analyses both the transformative and disruptive potential of the politics of language. Initial attention is paid to the theoretical notion of recognition and how these debates are particularly relevant to post-conflict places. Following this, consideration is taken of how language rights are applied or ignored at different levels in such broad-ranging contexts. This includes input from grassroots movements, alterations to restrictive attitudes at national level and the influence of global politics in the application of language rights in deeply divided societies.


Politics of recognition Reconciliation Peace process Post-conflict Divided societies 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Applied Social and Policy SciencesUlster UniversityDerryNorthern Ireland
  2. 2.Heriot-Watt UniversityEdinburghUK

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