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The use of language policy in the management of collective mental state: Sri Lanka and South Africa


Bostock, WW, The use of language policy in the management of collective mental state: Sri Lanka and South Africa, Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Political Science, Sociology and International Relations, 19-20 September 2016, Singapore, pp. 26-32. ISSN 2251-2403 (2016) [Refereed Conference Paper]


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Copyright 2016 GSTF

DOI: doi:10.5176/2251-2403_PSSIR16.16


This paper will explore the idea that political leaders will attempt to control, shift and otherwise manage the collective mental state through various instruments including language policy. Several case studies focusing on Sri Lanka and pre- and post-majority rule South Africa, will show how this is carried out. The general conclusion can be reached that it is possible to influence collective mental states through language policy by using language to: firstly, define a collective boundary, secondly, identify a collectivity through its prevailing ontology, and thirdly, adjust feelings, particularly fears, doubts and uncertainties, for selected purposes. Whether a collective mental state has been calmed or disturbed will have implications for order or conflict, peace or war, and accommodation or genocide.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Conference Paper
Keywords:language policy, collective mental state, Sri Lanka, South Africa
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Political science
Research Field:Political science not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Bostock, WW (Dr William Bostock)
ID Code:114225
Year Published:2016
Deposited By:School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2017-02-08
Last Modified:2017-06-27
Downloads:181 View Download Statistics

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