Re: FN:draft#1: english, spanish, lucia,

From: Eugene Matusov
Submit: Post Field Note
VisitDate: 00/00/96
Date: 06 Oct 1996
Time: 15:35:43
Remote Name:


Hi Mercedes--

Nice fieldnote!

The event you described makes me think what does it mean "I can speak English" (or whatever language for multi-language speaker). Christie's feedback mentioning different contexts for using laguage seems to imply that language profieciency can be domain specific. My 12-year old son, for example, can't discuss politics in English because politics in our family is topic #1 and we always discuss it in Russian. But he can't play in Russian even with Russian speaking children because he does not know to do it in Russian (he came to US when he was 4-year old).

I wonder if Lucia can't speak English with unfamiliar people in a very formal settings requiring to display her knowledge (e.g., "What's your name? How old are you?)

What do you think?




I have a question for you regarding your description of the event. You wrote, "Lucia wanted to play monopoly. So, a group gathered around to play. (Me and three older girls)"

Does it mean that the other girls and you started the game specifically for Lucia or she joint in the ongoing game? If the latter was true, do you remember how Lucia made a bit for joining and how the other girls accepted it?

I also wonder if Lucia used English only with you or with other girls? Did other girls talked with each other in English or Spanish? Did they speak with you a lot in the presence of Lucia?


I wonder if English was language of inclusion in the context of this game with you as a valued participant?


Mercedes, you articulation of inquiry is very concise and exact. If you decided to persue your inquiry how are you going to check if Lucia has a lack of confidence in her English?