Bilingual Aphasia: A Case Study According to the U.S. Bureau of the Census (1990), a minimum of 25 million people in this country are bilingual, speaking Spanish, an Asian or Pacific Island language, or “other” language in addition to English. Investigations of language use among ethnic groups in the United States indicate that the Spanish ... Article
Article  |   July 01, 1998
Bilingual Aphasia: A Case Study
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Belinda A. Reyes
    The University of Texas at El Paso
Article Information
Articles
Article   |   July 01, 1998
Bilingual Aphasia: A Case Study
Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations, July 1998, Vol. 4, 2-6. doi:10.1044/cds4.2.2
Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations, July 1998, Vol. 4, 2-6. doi:10.1044/cds4.2.2
According to the U.S. Bureau of the Census (1990), a minimum of 25 million people in this country are bilingual, speaking Spanish, an Asian or Pacific Island language, or “other” language in addition to English. Investigations of language use among ethnic groups in the United States indicate that the Spanish language is the most persistent of all foreign languages and has the greatest possibility for continued use (Romo, 1992). Schick and Schick (1991)  estimate that a minimum of 11 million people in the United States speak Spanish in the home setting, with the United States being identified as the fifth largest Spanish-speaking nation in the world, behind Mexico, Spain, Colombia and Argentina (Romo, 1991; U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1990, 1991). Moreover, Hispanic Americans are projected to account for one of every three net additions to the U.S. population in the next two decades, making them the largest minority in this country within the next 10 years (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1989, 1990). Ortiz (1993)  estimates that language usage among Hispanic Americans breaks down as follows: Spanish only, 19%; Bilingual with Spanish preference, 56%; Bilingual with English preference, 12.5%; and English only, 12.5%. Approximately 65% of Hispanic Americans are bilingual. Ortiz (1993)  suggests that bilingualism is likely to continue being a feature of the Hispanic American community in the foreseeable future. Clearly, speech-language pathologists can expect to be faced with increasing numbers of bilingual individuals from the Hispanic community requiring services. The purpose of this article is to present a case study of a bilingual Hispanic patient with aphasia. Specifically, bilingualism and code switching, and their impact on the clinical interaction will be addressed.
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