Translanguaging and decolonizing LPP: A case study of translingual practice in Macau

Lili Han, Zhisheng Edward Wen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The present paper aims to explore how the critical lens of translanguaging can shed new light on the decolonizing language policy and planning (LPP) issues in Macau. As an illustration, we analyze the Chinese translation of a Portuguese poem, Viola Chinesa, in tandem with the visual art piece by the contemporary Chinese artist Xu Bing's Square Word calligraphy tailored-made for Macau. In particular, we argue that the visual art piece by Xu Bing represents a visual and ideological turn of translanguaging that creates a hybrid piece of calligraphy to reverse the imagery orientalism reflected in the original Portuguese poem. By physically tracing the alphabets through the characters, viewers can gain an embodied translingual experience, which encompasses the ideological negotiation that transcends the Portuguese language dominance. In this boundary-breaking artwork, we can discern the deterritorialization of the unequal language and ideology dominance. Above all, it is concluded that the emerging translanguaging as a political and decolonizing stance provides new insights to renegotiate with fossilized values and beliefs, which in return, contribute to the decolonizing LPP of Macau.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-43
Number of pages23
JournalGlobal Chinese
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2022


  • Macau
  • Viola Chinesa
  • Xu Bing
  • decolonizing LPP
  • square word calligraphy
  • translanguaging
  • translation policy


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