Given the pervasiveness of language in social life and the implications that language use can have for one’s individual and collective identities, attempts were made to explore the theoretical and empirical advantages in connecting social psychological theories of identity and sociolinguistics in order to explore language and identity among second generation British Asians. This paper features a brief overview of the sociological background of British Asians and a detailed consideration of two social psychological theories of identity, namely, self-aspects model of identity (Simon, 2004) and identity process theory (Breakwell, 1986, 1992). It is considered that these under-utilised social psychological theories lend themselves readily to the study of language and identity among this population. Moreover, this paper considers the substantive literature on language and identity. It is argued that an interdisciplinary (social psychological and sociolinguistic) approach is particularly well-suited to the exploration of language and identity. Furthermore, ‘theoretically active’ phenomenological approaches may be particularly useful for research in this domain.
|Journal||Social Psychological Review|
|Publication status||Published - 2009|