Acquiring literacy in english and Spanish in the United States

Aydin Yücesan Durgunoğlu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

14 Scopus citations


Although the United States has been a bilingual country for centuries, with Native-American languages (Cherokee, Ojibway, etc.) and languages of new immigrants (German, Spanish, Chinese, etc.) existing side-by-side with another immigrant language, English, the debate on bilingualism has become fiercer in the last 75 years (Casanova & Arias, 1993; Daniels, 1990). It is ironic that this debate on bilingualism, and the scathing rhetoric of the English-only movement, come at a time when English is enjoying its status as lingua franca to a much larger extent than in the years before, and has become the major international language of trade, technology, and diplomacy (Baron, 1990; Secada & Lightfoot, 1993). Moreover, research on new immigrants shows that members of the first generation after immigration rapidly become monolingual English speakers. Other studies show that among Hispanic parents, 98% believe that their children need to speak English perfecdy in order to succeed (Crawford, 1989).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLiteracy Development in a Multilingual Context
Subtitle of host publicationCross-Cultural Perspectives
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781135456269
ISBN (Print)0805824421, 9780805824438
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013


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