Introduction: Sociolinguistics and tourism - mobilities, markets, multilingualism

Heller, Monica; Jaworski, Adam; Thurlow, Crispin (2014). Introduction: Sociolinguistics and tourism - mobilities, markets, multilingualism. Journal of sociolinguistics, 18(4), pp. 425-458. Blackwell Publishing (Wiley) 10.1111/josl.12091

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In the introduction to this special issue on Sociolinguistics and Tourism, we focus on language in tourism as an important window into contemporary forms of economic, political, and social change. Our aim is twofold: (1) to establish and extend ‘sociolinguistics and tourism’ as another social and applied domain of sociolinguistic research; and (2) to use tourism as a lens for a broader discussion of the sociolinguistics of late modernity. To this end, we outline the contours of language and tourism research to date; we consider the (re)conceptualization of key thematics or notions in sociolinguistic research – such as ‘community’, ‘identity’, and ‘language’ itself – as particularly germane to the study of tourism's fleeting encounters; we examine the inevitable tensions between commodification and authenticity; and we explore the links between performances of ‘self’ and ‘other’, and the contestation of different identity positions with regard to social actors’ multilingual repertoires. We illustrate these issues with data examples from several tourist sites, where multilingual resources are deployed for identification, authentication and commodification. Finally, we briefly introduce the papers in this special issue and conclude by commenting on some sociolinguistic consequences of the study of language/s in tourism.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Linguistics and Literary Studies > Institute of English Languages and Literatures

UniBE Contributor:

Thurlow, Crispin


800 Literature, rhetoric & criticism > 820 English & Old English literatures
400 Language > 420 English & Old English languages




Blackwell Publishing (Wiley)




Leona Josefine Irmgard Goop

Date Deposited:

18 Feb 2015 16:35

Last Modified:

29 Jan 2019 13:37

Publisher DOI:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Tourism, mobility, globalization, sociolinguistics, linguistic market, commodification of language, authenticity, identity, multilingualism, code-crossing




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