Chege Samuel Nganga, Geoffrey Maroko, Anashia Nancy Ong’onda


Addressing the intricate challenges within the realm of language planning and policy involves establishing meaningful connections between language policy texts, discourse, and actual language practices. Moreover, navigating connections across diverse domains, contexts, levels, layers, and scales presents a formidable challenge. Therefore, this study endeavours to unravel intertextual connections as a means of comprehending language-policy texts in the Kenyan context. Focusing on post-colonial language policies in Kenya, this paper explores intertextuality and interdiscursivity. Employing Fairclough's (1992) Critical Discourse approach, this analysis explores how language policy documents undergo decontextualization from prior discourses (intertextuality) and examine their correlation with different generic chains (interdiscursivity). The study employs a qualitative research design, specifically historical and documentary analysis. The study's findings reveal that post-colonial language policies exhibit links to both pre-colonial and current policy documents, showcasing vertical and horizontal intertextuality. Additionally, these policies are linked to a myriad of past and present discourses, such as those related to culture and diversity (interdiscursivity). Notably, the analysis of intertextuality and interdiscursive discourse reveals revisions to language policy and tracks the shifts in discourses surrounding this policy over time. In conclusion, this study emphasises that the meaningful interpretation of intertextuality and interdiscursivity renders language policy texts significant. It is anticipated that this research will shed light on understanding language policy through the lens of intertextuality and interdiscursivity, contributing to a more comprehensive perspective on language policy dynamics.


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critical discourse analysis, interdiscursivity, intertextuality, language practices, post-colonial language policies

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