Language Attitudes of the Gaddang Speakers towards Gaddang, Ilocano, Tagalog and English

Zayda S. Asuncion, Marilu Rañosa-Madrunio, Ph.D.


Language attitudes have been the focus of interest in sociolinguistics for the past decades. In the Philippines, there is a dearth of literature on sociolinguistic studies that focus on indigenous languages and their speakers. To contribute to the literature, this study endeavoured to investigate the attitudes of Gaddang speakers in the northern part of the country towards Gaddang, their native language; Ilocano, the lingua franca of the province; Tagalog/Filipino, the national language; and English, one of the official languages. It also explored possible differences in the language attitudes of the Gaddangs in terms of geographical location, age, gender, socio-economic status, and educational attainment. Using survey questionnaire and semi-structured interview, the study involved 568 respondents. Results revealed that Gaddang speakers manifest positive attitudes towards Tagalog, Gaddang, Ilocano, and English respectively. The study also yielded significant differences in their attitudes with respect to geographical location, age, socio-economic status, and educational attainment except gender. The results have significant implications on the maintenance or gradual loss of their native language.

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