WP71 Multilingual Europe 2.0: Dutch-Chinese youth identities in the era of superdiversity

Li & Juffermans
Collection: Key word


This paper argues that multilingual/multicultural identity in Europe has reached a next level since we have entered the era of superdiversity. Under superdiversity we are confronted with a diversification of diversity: relations between ethnicity, citizenship, residence, origin, language, profession, etc. have become more complex and less predictable than before, and as a consequence there is a need to revisit, deconstruct and reinvent our theoretical toolkit to analyse language, culture, ethnicity, identity, etc. This contribution draws on ongoing ethnographic fieldwork in and around a Chinese complementary school in the Netherlands and is part of a larger project investigating discourses of inheritance and identities in multilingual European settings. It focuses on the ethnic and linguistic identifications of Dutch-Chinese youngsters on the Asian and Proud community of the Dutch social networking site Hyves, and shows how Dutch-Chinese youngsters of diverse backgrounds engage in creative languaging in ?netnolectal? Dutch while discussing/celebrating their ethnic and linguistic identities. Focusing on young people?s identities, this paper aims to entangle the complexities of being, speaking and learning Chinese in the Netherlands. It thereby explores the internal diversity within Chineseness and its functioning within, or repositioning as, a larger Asian identity as well as its relation to Dutch/European-ness.