« previous article | next article »

Research Article

Code-Switching Between Lingua Francas

The Case of a Plurilingual Facebook Group

Arianna Bienati    Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna, Italia    

Claudia Borghetti    Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna, Italia    



This article reports on English-Italian code-switching in a Facebook group of university students. The aim of the study is to describe the students’ interactional practices and their alternate use of English and Italian as lingua francas. 773 posts and comments written by 81 members of the group were analysed in a pragmatic and conversational perspective. The study shows that code-switching was ruled by precise norms of interaction and served to manage participant constellations. It also facilitated mutual understanding among students with different degree of language competence, and contributed to the creation of the plurilingual ‘small culture’ of the group.

Keywords: Lingua franca. ELF. Code-switching. Plurilingualism. Facebook.

Language: it

Submitted: Feb. 8, 2020
Accepted: May 10, 2020
Published: March 31, 2021

permalink: http://doi.org/10.30687/ELLE/2280-6792/2021/01/003

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License