Maternal attitudes toward Spanish transmission in the U.S. Midwest: A necessary but insufficient condition for success

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This paper presents the results of an analysis of maternal attitudes toward intergenerational transmission of Spanish in a group of 19 first-generation Latino families in the city of Lincoln, Nebraska. A 12-item Likert scale was employed to survey respondent attitudes as part of a larger study on Spanish maintenance and loss in this Midwestern community. Attitudes toward transmission, perceptions about the viability of transmission in the context of the United States, attitudes toward children's bilingualism and perceptions about children's development of Spanish as related to their cultural identity were surveyed. Overall results suggest that respondents held strong positive attitudes towards inter-generational transmission of Spanish. As a group, strong positive attitudes were recorded for 10 of the 12 items presented. The two items with the lowest overall scores were related to the belief that children may be confused or cognitively overburdened if exposed to more than one language.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-248
Number of pages24
JournalSociolinguistic Studies
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013



  • Bilingualism
  • Language attitudes
  • Language transmission
  • Spanish
  • U.S. Midwest

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Linguistics and Language

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