To say that multilingualism is the norm and monolingualism the exception has become a truism. In fact, the European Union is clearly committed to a multilingual Europe in which all its educational systems are advised to include two Community languages. It is in this context where this volume analyses the language use and attitudes of would-be teachers, as they will play a paramount role when it comes to keeping multilingualism as one of the key features of the European identity. There are four main reasons why this volume can make a contribution to this field of research. Firstly, it is a transnational study involving nine different bilingual states/areas which allows the reader to compare contexts that, despite sharing some similarities, do have their own pecularities. Secondly, it considers not only the minority and majority languages, but also the different foreign languages. Thirdly, it relies on the same instrument and methodology. And last but not least, the participants will have an enormous influence on their different educational systems and on their students' linguistic perceptions.
David Lasagabaster is associate professor of English Studies at the University of the Basque Country. He has published on second language acquisition, foreign language teaching methodology, bilingualism and multilingualism. His latest publications include the volume Trilinguismo en la ensenanza. Actitudes hacia la lengua minoritaria, la mayoritaria y la extranjera (2003) published in Lleida by Milenio Educacion and the co-edited (together with Juan Manuel Sierra) volumes Multilinguismo y multiculturalismo en la escuela (2005) and Multilinguismo, competencia linguistica y nuevas tecnologias (2005), both published in Barcelona by Horsori. Angel Huguet is Lecturer at the Faculty of Educational Sciences of the University of Lleida, Catalonia, Spain. His research line during the last ten years has been focused on multilingualism and bilingual education. His current interests are oriented towards equal opportunities at school in contexts of immigration. His latest publications include the volumes El conocimiento de la lengua castellana en alumnado inmigrante escolarizado en 1 de ESO. Un estudio empirico (2005) co-authored with Jose Luis Navarro and published in Madrid by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, and Fundamentos en educacion bilingue (2006) co-authored with Jose Maria Madariaga and published in Bilbao by the University of the Basque Country.
Introduction: A Transnational Study in European Bilingual Contexts - David Lasagabaster and Angel Huguet Part I The Spanish Context 1 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Catalonia - Angel Huguet 2 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Galicia - Xaquin Loredo, Antonio Fernandez, Isabel Suarez and Hakan Casares 3 Language Use and Language Attitudes in the Basque Country - David Lasagabaster 4 Language Use and Language Attitudes in the Valencian Community - Maria Pilar Safont Part II Other European Contexts 5 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Brussels - Laurence Mettewie and Rudi Janssens 6 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Friesland - Jehannes Ytsma 7 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Ireland - Muiris O Laoire 8 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Malta - Sandro Caruana 9 Language Use and Language Attitudes in Wales - Janet Laugharne Conclusion: 10 The Linguistic Issue in some European Bilingual Contexts: Some Final Considerations - Angel Huguet and David Lasagabaster