The fallacy of social justice: a theoretical critique of critical language policy
Steele, Christina M.
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Given the prevalence of Critical language policy in the field of language policy and planning, this dissertation sets out to critically analyse both its foundations and implications through an examination of its grounding in the pursuit of social justice. This critical analysis will draw heavily on perspectives being developed in the newly emerging approach of Postcritical language policy. In an effort to properly account for the practical applications of the resulting theoretical arguments, this dissertation will assess Critical language policy in the context of Estonia which constitutes an ideal case study given the complex linguistic environment that has emerged partly as the result of Soviet occupation. Through the analysis described above, this dissertation sets out to argue that social justice and the approaches taken to pursue it, specifically linguistic human rights and language maintenance and revitalization, are fundamentally flawed, ultimately concluding that these flaws provide substantial grounds on which to question Critical language policy as a whole. It will further establish that not only are there viable alternatives to Critical language policy, but also that a continued reliance on the faulty claims of Critical language policy may have dangerous consequences.