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Micro-level language planning and YouTube comments: destigmatising indigenous languages through rap music

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Josep Cru



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Taylor & Francis, 2018.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


This article looks at the web comments to two video clips posted onYouTube in 2014. One video features the song ‘Sangre Maya’, by PatBoy and El Cima, two Maya rappers from the Yucatán peninsula ofMexico. The other song is called ‘Rap de la Tierra’ and isperformed by Luanko, a Mapuche rapper from Santiago in Chile.First, I discuss significant developments of institutional languagepolicy and planning aiming at the recognition of linguistic andcultural diversity in Mexico and Chile as well as micro-levelgrassroots initiatives that exploit new technologies and rap forlanguage revitalisation purposes. Drawing from the field oflanguage ideologies, I then look at a selection of YouTubecomments generated by these two relatively successful songs anddiscuss the prevailing discourses triggered by these video clips. Iargue that the overwhelmingly positive reaction to the songs,strengthens the ongoing revalorisation process of Yucatec Mayaand Mapudungun and works towards their destigmatisation,especially among youths. Furthermore, I show how the discursivespace generated by these web comments and the languageideologies expressed therein become an arena for broader socialdebates which index the subordinated sociopolitical position ofindigenous peoples in Latin American societies.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Cru J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Current Issues in Language Planning

Year: 2018

Volume: 19

Issue: 4

Pages: 434-452

Online publication date: 07/06/2018

Acceptance date: 23/01/2018

Date deposited: 04/03/2020

ISSN (print): 1466-4208

ISSN (electronic): 1747-7506

Publisher: Taylor & Francis


DOI: 10.1080/14664208.2018.1468960


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