Phd, Associate Professor of the Department of Philology and the Humanities MHEI “Vinnytsia academy of continuing education”
13 Grushevsky St., Vinnytsia 21100, Ukraine
Abstract: In the current study, we compare the results of surveys run in 2015 and 2019 in which students were asked different questions about their mother tongue, concerning the use of language to communicate with members of their families, with friends, at school, etc. In addition, the respondents had to specify the financial status (FS) of their family. All these students, aged between 15 – 18 years, live in the city of Vinnytsia.
In this survey, we clarify the role played by the financial resources of each student’s family when bilingual speakers have to choose between Ukrainian or Russian as their language of communication.
In general, there is no hard and fixed correlation between the FS of the respondent’s family and the choice of language made; however, in both surveys we note a certain tendency for students with a different FS to prefer one or the other language.
In 2015, high school students and their parents in high-income families preferred the Russian language. On the contrary, a 2019 poll showed a general increase in the amount of Ukrainian used by students coming from families with a higher level of FS (15% more in communicating with their friends, 18% more – with their fathers, and 25% more – with their mothers). In 2019, the use of Russian among adolescents from families with a lower FS increased significantly (4% more in communicating at school, 10% more in communicating with friends).
The data provided here gives us a clear understanding of the trends in the use of language analysed. These findings should serve a stimulus for further research in the area of bilingualism.
Keywords: Ukrainian-Russian bilingualism, bilingual speakers, language use, linguistic environment, language situation, financial factor in language use.
12. Tkachuk, T. (2015). Influence of the financial factor in a language choice in bilingual families. Jahrbuch der VI. Internationalen virtuellen Konferenz der Ukrainistik “Dialog der Sprachen – Dialog der Kulturen. Die Ukraine aus globaler Sicht” (München – Berlin, 2015). Р. 227 – 232 (in Germ.).