Three Concentric Circles by Braj Kachru

1743 Words7 Pages
1. Introduction
In 1985, Braj Kachru put forward the famous “Three Concentric Circles” framework to explain the spread and usage of global English. The inner circle includes the country where people speak English as native language. Then, the outer circle refers to the society which English is treated as a second language while the extending circle indicates the nation which English has the status of foreign language. (Bolton, 2000, p.266) Due to the colonization, English has maintained and gained official status in Hong Kong. Based on the theory, Hong Kong should be categorized into the outer circle. However, English is mainly adopted in international communication rather than in personal domains. (Groves, 2009, p.57) In this view, Hong Kong also has the trait of extending circle. Furthermore, Hong Kong has gone through a transition from British colony to a Special Administrative Region of China. The dramatic change of social politics called for a great change of linguistic situation.
The purpose of this paper is to analyze the local sociolinguistic environment and discuss the extent of multilingualism in Hong Kong. The paper is mainly divided into five sections. The first section is a brief introduction of the article. The following part goes to define multilingualism by using Singapore as an example. Then, the third section is the analysis of the language use in Hong Kong at individual level. Several dimensions of linguistic situation of Hong Kong are considered. The use of language in the perspective of social society will be discussed in section four. The last part is to summarize the previous argument and provide some reflections on the issues.
2. Definition of Multilingualism
Multilingualism is a very common phenomenon all...

... middle of paper ...

...ian Survey, 18 (10), 1067-1083.
Luk,B., Lin, A., Choi, P.K. &Wong, P.M.(2008). Education Reforms and Social Mobility: Rethinking the History of Hong Kong Education. In Siu, F.H. & Ku, S.A. (Ed.), Hong Kong Mobile: Making a Global Population. (pp. 293-325).Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press
Li, C.S. (2009). Towards ‘biliteracy and trilingualism’ in Hong Kong (SAR): problems, dilemmas and stakeholders’ views. AILA Review, 22, 72-84.
Media of Hong Kong.(n.d.). In Wikipedia. Retrieved April 3, 2014, from: html
Suen, M.Y. (2008). Speech at the symposium on medium of instruction. Retrieved March 16, 2008,from
Tan,J. (1997). Education and colonial transition in Singapore and Hong Kong: comparisons and contrasts. Comparative Education, 33 (2), 302-312.

More about Three Concentric Circles by Braj Kachru

Open Document