English in Iran

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    Abstract

    Even a casual observer of the linguistic landscape in Iran will have to conclude that Iranians have a collective fetish for English. Almost all public signage is bilingual in English and Persian, even in cases where it is hard to imagine an English-speaking audience for a sign (e.g., ATMs that only accept Iranian cards; it’s impossible to use international bank and credit cards in Iran). Participants at the Language-on-the-Move workshop at the University of Tehran told me that English has two broad meanings in Iran: on the one hand, it is seen as a passport to higher education (passing an English test is a prerequisite to many university courses and English is part of the general education component of all university courses) and it is seen as a passport to the wider world outside Iran and strongly associated with going abroad.
    Original languageEnglish
    Specialist publicationLanguage on the move
    PublisherLanguage on the move
    Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2010

    Bibliographical note

    © 2018 Language on the Move. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

    Keywords

    • 200401 applied linguistics and educational linguistics
    • 200405 language in culture and society (sociolinguistics)

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