The Role of Shame in Drawing Social Boundaries for Empowerment: ELT in Kiribati

Indika Liyanage, Suresh Canagarajah

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


You don’t want to be seen as you are trying to differentiate yourself from everyone else by the fact that you speak a different language. But things are changing you know, I speak openly to my kids in English in public. I have a message to deliver to everyone else but I know, behind my back I know the kind of things people are talking about, you know, I’m trying to be different, I’m trying to be a European, I’m trying to be a white. You know, which in an egalitarian context like Kiribati, those are insults. One of the most important things in Kiribati life is the avoidance of being shamed And one of the things that brings shame to you is when you try to be different from the rest. And I think that’s what people are running away from and it’s a pity that it’s affecting the way they speak English and their confidence in speaking in English.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Dynamics of Language and Inequality in Education
Subtitle of host publicationSocial and Symbolic Boundaries in the Global South
PublisherChannel View Publications
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781788926959
ISBN (Print)9781788926935
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Social Sciences
  • General Arts and Humanities


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