The nexus of Family Language Policy


  • Lyn Wright University of Memphis Author





Three decades of research on reversing language shift, bi- and multilingual parenting, and Family Language Policy (FLP) have demonstrated that, while parental language practices and ideologies are important factors in determining children’s language competencies and outcomes, parents do not exist in a vacuum. Family language policies are influenced by a myriad of sociohistorical and relational processes that are examined in depth in this special issue. The articles here capture the reality of the complexities of FLP by examining family-external factors such as the COVID-19 lockdown, access to digital communication, geography and community, migration histories, national language policies, and family structures among others, to explain the particular family language policies present in communities around the world (from Iran to Cyprus to Northern Ireland) and their effects on children’s language outcomes and family members’ linguistic experiences.

Author Biography

  • Lyn Wright, University of Memphis

    Lyn Wright (University of Memphis, United States) is an applied linguist with interests in bi- and multilingualism, language policy, and language learning and teaching. Her research investigates the ideological, interactional, and affective aspects of language development through language socialization and discourse analytic approaches. She has published on topics of family language policy, language and kinship, sexuality and language learning, and engaged learning in TESOL teacher training.


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Ruiz, R. (1984) Orientations in language planning. NABE Journal 8(2): 15–34. Doi:

Wright, L. (2020) Critical perspectives on language and kinship in multilingual families. London: Bloomsbury Academic.




How to Cite

Wright, L. (2024). The nexus of Family Language Policy. Sociolinguistic Studies, 18(1-2), 7-10.