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Ethnographies of Language Socialization: Resources for Teaching Undergraduate Anthropology

See below for a list of recent ethnographies on language socialization, which will appeal to educators and students of anthropology, particularly at the undergraduate level, as well as to readers with a general interest in linguistic anthropology.

These titles were suggested on the LINGANTH listserv by members of the Society for Linguistic Anthropology, and to make additional suggestions, please email: or post your suggestions to LINGANTH. Ethnographies are listed in reverse chronological order of publication.

Click on the images to learn more about each title. 


Gilmore, P. (2015). Kisisi (Our Language): The Story of Colin and Sadiki. Wiley-Blackwell.


García-Sánchez, I. M. (2014). Language and Muslim Immigrant Childhoods: The Politics of Belonging. Wiley-Blackwell.


Minks, A. (2013). Voices of Play: Miskitu Children’s Speech and Song on the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua. University of Arizona Press.


Benor, S.B. (2012). Becoming Frum: How Newcomers Learn the Language and Culture of Orthodox Judaism. Rutgers University Press.


Paugh, A. L. (2012). Playing with Languages: Children and Change in a Caribbean Village. Berghahn Books.


Meek, B. A. (2010). We Are Our Language: An Ethnography of Language Revitalization in a Northern Athabaskan Community. University of Arizona Press.


Fader, A. (2009). Mitzvah Girls: Bringing Up the Next Generation of Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn. Princeton University Press. 


Cook, H. M. (2008). Socializing Identities through Speech Style: Learners of Japanese as a Foreign Language (Vol. 32). Multilingual Matters.


Gade, A. M. (2004). Perfection Makes Practice: Learning, Emotion, and the Recited Qurʼān in Indonesia. University of Hawaii Press.


Rydstrøm, H. (2003). Embodying Morality: Growing Up in Rural Northern Vietnam. University of Hawaii Press.


Kulick, D. (1997). Language Shift and Cultural Reproduction: Socialization, Self and Syncretism in a Papua New Guinean Village (No. 14). Cambridge University Press.


Zentella, A. C. (1997). Growing Up Bilingual: Puerto Rican Children in New York. Wiley-Blackwell.


see also:


Duranti, A., Ochs, E., & Schieffelin, B. B. (Eds.). (2011). The Handbook of Language Socialization (Vol. 72). John Wiley & Sons.


Lancy, D. F., Bock, J. C., & Gaskins, S. (2010). The Anthropology of Learning in Childhood. Rowman & Littlefield.


Kramsch, C. (Ed.). (2003). Language Acquisition and Language Socialization: Ecological Perspectives. Bloomsbury Publishing.



To make additional suggestions of recent ethnographies on language socialization, please email: or post your suggestions to LINGANTH.