Selasa, 03 Mei 2011

Introduction to Sociolinguistics

Introduction to Sociolinguistics

Language and Society?

Society: any group of people who are drawn together for a certain purpose or purposes.

Language: what the members of a particular society speak.

Some Language Phenomena in Society

The language of formal written document

Cockney and Black English

Fast colloquial speech

Completely novel sentences

Slips of the tongue

The Problems of Variation What might cause a speaker to say….?

1. Do you think it’s cold in here?

2. The airport, as fast as you can.

3. I do.

4. Do you love me?

5. How strange!

6. Can we have some silence at the back?

7. Will you marry me?

8. You don’t love me anymore.

Possible Relationship between Language and Society

1. Social structure may influence or determine linguistic structure and/or behavior ( S à L) .

2. Linguistic structure and/or behavior may influence or determine social structure (L à S) .

3. Language and society may influence each other (bi-directional) (S < --> L).

4. There is no relationship at all between language and society (asocial linguistics) (S + L).

Relationship between Language and Society

Language and society may influence each other.

Gumperz àSociolinguistics: an attempt to find correlations between social structure and linguistics structure and to observe any changes that occur.

Sociolinguistics and Sociology of Language

Will be concerned with investigating the relationship between language and society with the goal of a better understanding of the structure of language and of how languages function in communication.

The goal is to discover how social structure can be better understood through the study of language.

Sociolinguistics and Sociology of Language

The study of language in relation to society.

To study society in order to find out as much as we can what kind of thing language is.

The study of society in relation to language.

To study language in order to find out about as much as we can that kind of society is.

Sociolinguistics and Sociology of Language

The emphasis:

Sociolingusitics àanalyzing linguistic

Sociology of Language à social structures


Considers “who speaks (or writes) what language (or what language variety) to whom and when and to what end” (Fishman).

Empirical science: based on fact and data

Variety of Questions and Data in Sociolinguistics

Correlational Studies: Relate 2 or more variables

Implicational Studies: If X, then Y (bes or best?)

Microlinguistic Studies: focus on very specific linguistic items (individual differences) à Slang, Black, etc.

Macrolinguistic Studies: large amount of language data à to draw broad conclusion (e.g. choices in language planning)

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