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3 - The Invisibility of Linguistic Diversity Online

Reflections on the Political Economy of Digital Communication

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 March 2020

Cécile B. Vigouroux
Affiliation:
Simon Fraser University, British Columbia
Salikoko S. Mufwene
Affiliation:
University of Chicago
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Summary

This chapter takes at its starting point a theoretical perspective that links language, signs, and sign-making firmly to the material world, and the inequalities that shape this world. The visibility, and invisibly, of linguistic diversity online is a function of these larger socioeconomic processes, and the digital social inequalities they give rise to. The internet and associated networking applications might be “new” technologies, but they reflect and reproduce historical continuities of structural inequality, reinforcing the imbalances, silences, and marginalizations that define the global world system.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2020

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