Korean ESL Parents’ Perspectives and Maintenance of Mother Tongue: A Case Study of Two Korean Mothers

  •  Jaeseok Yang    


This case study explores the language attitudes and perceptions of Korean parents, with regard to their children’s native language maintenance and ESL education in the US. The primary focuses are on (1) what aspects are held by Korean parents toward the maintenance of the native language in the US, and (2) how these perspectives operate in their children’s language education. The data for this study includes autobiographies and in-depth interviews with two Korean mothers whose children attend a Korean language program at a Korean school in the US. The findings indicate three emerging issues, including native language maintenance, practices of language using, and identity formation. The elicited data underscores that English exceeds its meaning as a single language. For the parents, the English proficiency signifies prospective social outcomes (e.g., employment, wealth, and education) for their children’s life in the future.

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