2    Historical review of the PRC'sminority/indigenous languagepolicy and practice

Nation-state building and identityconstruction

Minglang Zhou

Background

The PRC has a minority population of over 106 million, most of whom are indigenous. How have the PRC's language policy and practice for this minority population evolved in the past six decades? This question essentially concerns what minority communities have experienced in their language use in school, at work, and even at home in a multilingual China, where over 129 languages are spoken (Sun, Hu, & Huang, 2007). Further, the answer to this question involves the relationship between the PRC's language policy and identity construction, that is, the role the PRC has expected language to play ...

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