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Language planning policies in Post-Soviet Kazakhstan

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2007
Güney, Işıl
The aim of thesis is to analyze the relationship between language planning policies and nation building process in post-Soviet Kazakhstan. The language planning policies in Kazakhstan aim to raise the status and role of Kazakh language in political and social contexts (status planning), develop Kazakh language as the medium of administration, education, media and science (corpus planning), and spread the use of Kazakh language (acquisition planning). However, given the demographic conditions, heterogeneous and multilingual ethnic composition of Kazakhstan, the desired progress has not been achieved. The main argument of the thesis is that so long as Kazakhstan cannot develop comprehensive, well-integrated language planning policies with suitable short-, medium- and long-term targets it cannot be expected to have success in their desire to make Kazakh the state language. The reason lies in the fact that Kazakhstan consist of a sizeable Russian minority and an ethnic nation building process takes place in the country. Thus, the existing language planning policies cannot respond to the needs of the society. The thesis examines factors and reasons affecting this process. To this end, the thesis shall cover an analysis language policies and nation building policies within a historical context.