Since the 1950s and especially since the early 1990s, tussentaal is a “hot item” amongst
Flemish linguists. Nevertheless, its descriptions and explanations are still rather thin on
the ground. Existing data on non- or sub-standard spoken Dutch in Flanders are too scarce
for linguists to answer important questions about tussentaal's conceptualization and variation.
This paperis a modest attempt to broaden the existing data set through analyzing
the informal speech of seven children in the youth movement. This survey pointed out
that for these children, tussentaal is normative in informal situations, but that even if the
children know other varieties of Dutch, they hardly ever switch neatly from one to
another. This suggests that they do not conceptualize tussentaal as a separate variety of
Dutch, but as a set of variants that can be used separately depending on the expression of
certain meanings and relevant pragmatic values.