This paper discusses how multilingual university students in Ghana claim and maintain their identities through the use of language. The paper is based on an ethnographic study involving eight university students who spoke more than two multiple Ghanaian languages, in addition to one or two international languages. The paper examines how their choice of languages projects the cultural identity they claim and maintain. Although most of the languages of the world are directly linked to ethnic groups, some researchers assert that language is not the necessary condition for ethnic group membership. However, this paper contends that Ghanaian University students claim and maintain ethnolinguistic identity as their cultural identity. The data for the study, collected over a four-month period was analysed through constant comparative analysis and based on Grounded Theory (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). Implications for the study should inform educators in multilingual communities, especially, African countries, and motivate language policy makers to maintain additive multilingualism.
|Keywords:||Multilingualism, Ethnolinguistic Identity, Cultural Identity|
Lecturer, Department of English, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana
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