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Born European, born regional, or born global? Language convergence in The Team

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This article converges insights from media geography, international business, marketing, linguistics and cognitive science in an exploratory discussion that examines the relationships between language convergence in the TV drama series The Team (2015) and the notion of Born European/Born Global products and companies. It presents the linguistic notion of ‘code-switching’ that occurs when multilingual speakers shift between languages and reflects this in the views of the scriptwriters and participants of two group interviews that differed in their sensitivities to multiple languages. By considering how people ‘see’ what they ‘hear’, the article considers how multilingual resources are used aesthetically, politically and strategically with business goals in sight. These views are further associated with conceptual developments in the notion of ‘Born Global’ that describes the characteristics and activities of companies that conduct international activities from their inception. The article uses these developments in thinking about the novel convergences present in international intrapreneurship, the labelling of phenomena as European/regional/global, and the identification of product attributes such as culture-specificity and domain-specificity to suggest that language convergence, and especially the presence of English, becomes an integral attribute of The Team. Language convergence simultaneously textures The Team with Europeanness, regionalness and globalness and fills it with the potential for wide distribution and viewership.
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Keywords: Born European; Born Global; TV drama; code-switching; international intrapreneurship; language convergence

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Aarhus University

Publication date: June 1, 2016

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  • Northern Lights: Film and Media Studies Yearbook was first published in 2002 and places particular emphasis on film, television and new media. The yearbook, although carrying a theme each issue, welcomes a broad range of articles along with shorter review pieces.
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