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This content is taken from the University of Groningen's online course, Multilingual Practices: Tackling Challenges and Creating Opportunities. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds [Dutch] It means you speak more than one language, like me. Dutch, German and Portuguese. Multilingualism according to me is An environment where you have different countries coming together. Where every language has the same Value as the other ones [German] For me, multilingualism is actually completely normal. At least here we all speak several languages. Unfortunately I only speak two languages, though… I understand a few more, for example Dutch. But I don’t speak it. It should be completely normal. For me multilingualism is Understanding or speaking two or more languages in your daily life.

Skip to 1 minute and 7 seconds Smart. Being smart. Emotions. Being connected to your language and your emotions. And intercultural understanding as well. [Spanish:] Different languages, intercultural communication. Things like that. [Dutch:] Esperanto. [Dutch:] Travelling, making friends. Things like that.

Skip to 1 minute and 33 seconds [Dutch:]I feel a secret pride in being Frisian. I wouldn’t want it to die out as a language. So I’ll keep speaking it with my parents. [Spanish]: I think that, especially today… It’s very important, because it helps you understand different cultures. Mexican culture, for example, is related to the language. So if you study Mexican Spanish, you’ll understand more of the Mexican people. I believe nowadays it’s a very important and positive thing. [Dutch:]I think it’s a positive thing. It allows you to speak with more people on this planet. The more, the merrier. Positive. Definitely positive.

What is multilingualism to you?

The views on what multilingualism is and what is means for individuals and societies differ greatly. Do you need to speak several languages at a high level to be a multilingual? Or is multilingualism the coexistence of different languages in one geographical space?

We are interested in finding out what your ideas on this are. In this activity, you will first watch a video with a compilation of different views on multilingualism. We have asked random people on the street about their opinion, but also the families in the course and the experts we have interviewed.

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This video is from the free online course:

Multilingual Practices: Tackling Challenges and Creating Opportunities

University of Groningen

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