Becoming ‘True’ Indians


in Schooling the National Imagination

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780198062752
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199080205 | DOI:
Becoming ‘True’ Indians

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This chapter demonstrates that no language bears a permanent essence, remains an unchanging signifier. English is no longer seen as a marker of Englishness, a symbolic capital which only some — the privileged — might lay claim to. Today, English no longer carries the colonial marks of its origin. Instead, it is reinscribed with new meanings. Everyone in India — the poor and the marginalized — wants to learn English. It is a language that is Indian, like many other languages are, but it is perceived as enabling access to the world. Increasingly, it is the language seen as belonging to the present, a language that everyone can and ought to learn to be modern, ‘to be a true Indian’.

Keywords: English studies; English curriculum; India; language education; English language

Chapter.  4566 words. 

Subjects: Sociology

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