Who's Afraid of Rinkeby Swedish? Stylization, Complicity, Resistance

Tommaso M. Milani, Rickard Jonsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Over the last 30 years, linguistic practices of young people in highly dense urban environments in Sweden (also called Rinkeby Swedish) have become something of a Foucauldian conundrum: a phenomenon to be investigated, a problem to be regulated. The present article will explore the dynamic interplay between the ideologies and practices with regard to Rinkeby Swedish. The article will focus on (1) a panel debate that took place in the context of the annual School Forum (Skolforum) in Stockholm in 2009, and (2) a few school interactions among those adolescents whose linguistic practices have generated so much public concern. The main argument of the article is that both the public debate and the school practices are examples of stylized performances in which the participants simultaneously reproduce and complexify or resist dominant language ideologies, together with the (local) cultural meanings and stereotypes associated with them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-63
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Linguistic Anthropology
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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