Colloquial Singapore English (Singlish)

Colloquial Singaporean English (Singlish) is a postcolonial Southeast Asian variety of English spoken in the densely populated city-state of Singapore. The linguistic ecology of Singlish is characterised by extensive contact situations. Its speakers, the ethnically mixed resident population, count close to 4 million and mainly consist of Chinese, Malays and Indians. English is the ethnically neutral of the four official languages and used as the national lingua franca. It is taught as a first language by teachers commonly using the indigenised form in the classroom. Literacy in English and its use as a domestic language have risen significantly in the last decades; Singaporeans increasingly consider themselves native speakers of the local variety and command a range of stylistic variants. Although Singlish is challenged by the governmentʼs language policy, it is valued by its speakers as an expression of a distinct Singaporean identity.

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