Heteroglossia

(253 words)
  • Simon Dentith (University of Reading)

Literary/ Cultural Context Note

The term heteroglossia translates the Russian raznorecie (literally, multilanguagedness), a term coined by Bakhtin in the essay “Discourse in the Novel” (published in English in The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays, edited by Michael Holquist, translated by Caryl Emerson and Michael Holquist [University of Texas Press, 1981]). The term alludes to the multiplicity of languages within the apparent unity of any national language. However, it should not be confused with a simple celebration of linguistic diversity, for the term alludes not only to the co-existence of “languages” within a language, but their co-existence in a state of tension and competition. In particular, it alludes to the tension between …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are not a subscriber, please click here to read about membership. All our articles have been written recently by experts in their field, more than 95% of them university professors.

Citation:
Dentith, Simon. "Heteroglossia". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 18 July 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=510, accessed 29 July 2014.]