• A Sociolinguistic Perspective on Child Language Brokering: Attitudes, Perception of Self and Interactional Contributions
  • Ceccoli, Federica <1989>


  • L-LIN/12 Lingua e traduzione - Lingua inglese


  • Children and adolescents from immigrant families often mediate and translate for their parents and other family members who are not as proficient in the local language, a practice known as Child Language Brokering. The task that these children perform while brokering is multi-faceted and may have multiple consequences on all the parties involved as well as representing a source of power and agency for the children who perform it. This doctoral thesis sets out to explore how child language brokering is perceived, remembered and performed by bilingual migrant children. By combining a qualitative and quantitative methodological approach, which draws on a multidisciplinary framework, the aim is to investigate child language brokers’ attitudes and selfperceptions about this phenomenon and their interactional contribution within the interaction they broker. A self-reported questionnaire was administered to high-school students attending vocational schools in the central and northern regions of Italy in order to examine the affective, behavioural, and cognitive components of their attitudes towards child language brokering. A semi-structured interview was conducted with junior high-school students to investigate their self-perceptions and feelings about this practice, and to explore their perceived agency when performing this activity. Real-life interactions brokered by children were audio-recorded in order to study how child language brokers co-construct meaning and participate in the communication they broker. The findings from this research project suggest that implementing a mixed methodology to investigate such a multifaceted and complex phenomenon is a valuable approach. The findings highlight the interactional agency and the active role of child language brokers, who are agentic and empowered participant in the conversation they broker.


  • 2019-03-21


  • Doctoral Thesis
  • PeerReviewed


  • application/pdf



Ceccoli, Federica (2019) A Sociolinguistic Perspective on Child Language Brokering: Attitudes, Perception of Self and Interactional Contributions, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum UniversitĂ  di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Traduzione, interpretazione e interculturalitĂ  , 31 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/9019.