The Language Game: A Game-Theoretic Approach to Language Contact
We study a society inside which two official languages, the majority language A and the minority language B, are in contact and compete for the same social functions. We propose a non-cooperative game to capture some features of this competitive situation. In the game, there are two types of players: the bilingual one who speaks both A and B and the monolingual one who speaks only A. The information about which type is each player is private. A real life situation captured by the game is that in many interactions bilingual players must decide under incomplete information about which language to use. One implication of this information structure is that while A satisfies the main properties of a public good, B does not. Another implication is that it may have dangerous consequences on the language diversity of the society. We show that in many equilibria bilingual players fail to coordinate in their preferred language and end up using the majority language A.
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|Order Information:|| Postal: Dpto. de Fundamentos del Análisis Económico I, Facultad de CC. Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad del País Vasco, Avda. Lehendakari Aguirre 83, 48015 Bilbao, Spain|
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- Farrell Joseph, 1993.
"Meaning and Credibility in Cheap-Talk Games,"
Games and Economic Behavior,
Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 514-531, October.
- Joseph Farrell., 1986. "Meaning and Credibility in Cheap-Talk Games," Economics Working Papers 8609, University of California at Berkeley.
- J. Farrell, 2010. "Meaning and Credibility in Cheap Talk Games," Levine's Working Paper Archive 533, David K. Levine.
- Farrell, Joseph, 1986. "Meaning and Credibility in Cheap-Talk Games," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt4968n3fz, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
- Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-1451, November.
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