Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange
Join us in building a kind, collaborative learning community via our updated Code of Conduct.

The study of societal effects on language use and of language use on society.

10
votes
4answers
1k views

At what point does a language become its descendant?

With the possible exceptions of constructed languages, languages seem to evolve. As a real-world example, we note that Latin has evolved into Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, etc. What ...
-1
votes
1answer
32 views

Sociolinguistics and slang [closed]

if slang is part of sociolinguistics, can you give me some explanations about why slang is part of sociolinguistics? what is the relation between slang and sociolinguistics? Thank you
7
votes
3answers
990 views

Why did the pronunciation of the rhotic phoneme /r/ change after the 2ndWW in public speech?

For example why did radio presenters roll the r on the BBC before the war and not after? Why did Brecht roll the r extensively? Why did Hitler roll the r extensively? My perspective is from the ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

How to determine word frequency based on demographic? (Does a public library of word frequencies exist by demographic)

I'm not sure "sign post" questions are appropriate however that is what this is. I am looking for a tool, a means of answering questions such as "Word X is used more by demographic Y than demographic ...
2
votes
0answers
57 views

Is accent prejudice well-established in film/television hubs other than Hollywood?

In US films and television, characters with a British accent are typically smart. Characters with a deep south accent are typically foolish or uneducated. And characters with a Scottish accent are ...
0
votes
3answers
198 views

Is there a natural language that doesn’t use an action verb to describe death?

English uses “activity” verbs such as the verb “to be” to describe that a person is dead, as in “He is dead,” or “He died.” Is there a language that doesn’t do this? I know that some languages have ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How does ghetto talk work in tonal languages?

Among historically low income/education groups in the US and in my native Mexico City, "ghetto talk" is heavy on the use of pitch to convey meaning. I've always attributed this to people compensating ...
4
votes
0answers
47 views

Where can I find the HISTORICAL data on the total no of speakers of a language?

E.g. in total, how many people around the world spoke Spanish and French respectively in the 18th century? Well, I know the data on most languages are scanty. So no, I'm focusing on major world ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Which linguistic data should I use for a sociolinguistic p. on traditional and constructivist approach on gender identity(pop culture, corpus)?

We had a presentation on monday. There were two older students to give us advice. The girl always asked to speak before she did and the boy just gave his commentary right away. There are many ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Are there any studies of language variation that deal with orthographic variation?

I'm interested in reading up on any sociolinguistic literature that deal with orthography in terms of variation, à la variationist sociolinguistics. I've never actually come across references to such ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

What is the linguistic cause of the formation of “competete” a wrong variant of “compete”?

Competete a variant of Compete used in colloquial speech, but is written with the same spelling as the latter, has come into use (at the least) in Indian English variants if in no other English ...
0
votes
0answers
67 views

Terminology for masculine vs. feminine speech/language styles

I'm looking for terminology to describe voices/speech/language patterns in a dataset in a publication based on whether they seem to the linguistically-educated transcriber to be "masculine", "feminine"...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

How do I report the distribution of a variant among genders?

Just a quick question as I'm slightly confused If I want to report the use of e.g. [t] among males and females, in a graph, would the percentages be worked out as follows: males/ all tokens ...
-1
votes
1answer
102 views

Why would sociolinguists want to study perceptual dialectology?

In other words, how would understanding non-linguists' (or the folks') beliefs about and attitudes towards language help us understand dialect diversity?
4
votes
2answers
143 views

Educating people in their mother tongue

Not all nations provide education in the national tongue. In India, being educated in English is generally preferred. I am looking for any study with details about the situations in different ...
4
votes
1answer
848 views

Definitions of extra-linguistic, internal and external change?

I am new to linguistics, and have just started reading about sociolinguistics. I'm interested in language change and motivations for it. There are three terms that I have come across, but am ...
1
vote
0answers
74 views

Is this what English/Mandarin Chinese or other 21st century dominant langauges would eventually do too? (details below)(yup that's opinion based) [closed]

Umbrians, for example, continued to make inscriptions in their language for centuries after Roman annexation. But eventually the power and status of Latin prevailed, particularly after all residents ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Do languages tend to lose the distinction between formal and informal language?

It would make sense to me that, as the social differences decline due to the progresing demographic transition, the societies would tend to loose the the distinction between formal and informal ...
0
votes
1answer
122 views

Are there tribes speaking Indonesian?

I'm learning Indonesian and I was telling myself it's great for an anthropologist to be able to aproach so many aboriginal languages in the group. Though, I'm not really sure if this could be a real ...
0
votes
2answers
119 views

Why is “intrusive r” not stigmatized like other “mispronunciations”?

Why is it that dropping h's pronouncing (th) as (f), or using a flapped intervolic t/d are taken as signs of poor education, when it's, objectively, just as orthographically wrong?
7
votes
0answers
155 views

The current status of Irish Gaelic in Ireland

In addition to all the usual phonology, grammar, and vocabulary one has to learn for a new language there is the social situation, among many things when is it appropriate to speak in one register or ...
7
votes
2answers
133 views

Is there a general term for certain words or phrases that are socially acceptable for some groups to say, but not others?

There are some words or phrases that are socially acceptable for some groups to say, but not others. A famous example in American culture is the N-word, which is acceptable for blacks to say, but not ...
5
votes
0answers
49 views

Term for universally-used quote with additional, non-compositional meaning

There exist certain fixed expressions which people use to convey quite specific meanings and (at least to me) always invoke a famous saying which is assumed to be common knowledge, such as I am not a ...
3
votes
4answers
161 views

Interesting exemplary cases where natural/political boundaries have led to language divergence

I'm looking for nice examples of the influence of natural or political boundaries to dialect divergence for introductory purposes. Generally through some limitations on the ability of people to ...
0
votes
2answers
115 views

Can framing lang acquisition as nature vs nurture be harmful? [closed]

I'm taking a class in language acquisition called "Nature vs Nurture". I'm not particularly fond of that framing, because the divide seems overly dichotomous. In addition, the N-vs-N debate has been ...
3
votes
3answers
258 views

How would a trained linguist describe this hypothesis of Symbolic Leverage

Context Two economics students are attempting to describe a concept of language, but do not know of any formally-recognized terms or research that explain this concept. They believe there is an ...
2
votes
0answers
63 views

Question about Michael Silverstein and Linguistics Ideology

I'm trying to understand Silverstein approach to ideological change. To my understanding he claims speakers are aware of the social and power relations reflected in the language usage and structure, ...
3
votes
2answers
285 views

Why do we need erudite langage?

I am not a native English speaker and thus, am not sure whether 'erudite language' is putting it right. Yesterday, a friend of mine stated that he thinks that lots of people, including himself, do ...
1
vote
0answers
482 views

Overt prestige and covert prestige vs convergence and divergence

Hi I've been reading a lot about overt and covert prestige from Labov's experiments in the department stores and convergence and divergence from Howard Giles' Communication Accommodation Theory and ...
7
votes
1answer
233 views

What are the differences between theoretical perspectives of the uses of the term “register”?

I'd be interested in asking people about their understanding of the term register and what this signifies for them. This would be a discussion about a specialised term and I'm sure there are multiple ...
2
votes
0answers
169 views

Saying words aloud to confirm/disprove accuracy of written language

I had a really interesting thought the other day: Is oral language dominant/superior in some way to written language? I bring this up because every time I need to correct or edit my written words (I ...
7
votes
5answers
704 views

Is honorific “uncle” common across the languages of the world?

In Russian and English (and as far as I know Chinese) it's customary for kids to use honorific "uncle" when addressing elders by name (as a kid, you'd rather call an adult "uncle John" than "John", ...
1
vote
1answer
161 views

Sociolinguistics VS Rhetoric

Can anyone tell me major differences between rhetoric and sociolinguistics? And what theoretical commonalities they share? I'm a rhetoric student, and I'm looking to go to grad school, but I'm not ...
1
vote
0answers
148 views

How does the use of slang words / language among young people affect their relationship with older generation? [closed]

I'm doing a research for my sociolinguistics class. Do you think this is a good topic?
1
vote
2answers
208 views

language distinctions based on gender (sex) of “speaker”

UPDATED BELOW In portuguese women say obrigada and men say obrigado In thai women say sawadee ka and men say sawadee krap Is there a linguistic term for these gender based distinctions? How ...
1
vote
1answer
71 views

“Dexenoethnic exonyms”: typological studies, references and/or resources?

By "dexenoethnic exonym" (my own coinage for the purpose of this particular question) I mean an ethnonym/glottonym derived from a name originally applied to a (language of a) different ethnic group, ...
2
votes
0answers
43 views

Theories/Models to explain the language evolution? [closed]

I'd like to read about the language evolution and the models related to it such as the Schneider's Model. Any help? :)
2
votes
1answer
123 views

Is language is more about “intent” rather than a great tool for communication? [closed]

Do you think it's fair to say Language is more about "intent" rather than a great tool for communication? I wonder if it is a limitation of language in some way, that its so easy to miscommunicate ...
4
votes
0answers
164 views

Help us save a dying language with only 1 speaker left! [closed]

It's difficult to do this single-handedly, so I could use some professional help. :) I'm a professor of Ancient Egyptian (and cosmology as well, which means I'm a perfect target for conspiracy ...
2
votes
3answers
217 views

How viable is the Star Wars model of intercultural communication?

It seems to me that nations are currently opting for the hegemony of the English language in intercultural communication. And though single language civilization model undoubtedly has many perks, I ...
15
votes
2answers
577 views

Are American English and British English growing closer together or drifting further apart?

I'm mostly wondering about vocabulary (e.g. truck vs. lorry; apartment vs. flat) but I suppose I'd be interested to learn about pronunciation too. Intuitively I feel like this could go either way. ...
7
votes
3answers
685 views

Do animals have foreign languages?

Humans living in different parts of the world develop different languages; humans living in the same area speak the same language in order to be able to communicate with each other. We know that other ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

What are the possible impetuses for loss of Middle English shwa?

I'm wondering what some possible catalysts/ reasons for loss of final -e /ǝ/ in Middle English might have been (For instance, OE /tɑlu/ > ME /taːlǝ/ > MnE tale /teɪl/). I'm wondering because to my ...
1
vote
0answers
30 views

What is the go-to reference for a distinction between language attitudes and language use?

The areas of study for language attitudes/language regard/language ideology have developed with a somewhat intuitive contrast to studies of language use. Is there a good reference that explains where ...
3
votes
1answer
223 views

How do concepts folk linguistics and language ideology relate to each other?

I'm looking to understand the relationships between two areas of study, folk linguistics (as in Niedzielski & Preston, 2003) and language ideology (as in e.g. Woolard & Schieffelin, 1994 or ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

Looking for complementary word related to "xenophobia'

The Greek-rooted word "xenophobia" is commonly used to refer to "unjustified fear of an 'other'" in English. I'm looking some words which have related but different meanings: "unjustified ...
3
votes
1answer
741 views

Do all cultures have “taboo language”?

In english, taboo language may be realized as swear words--though I could see some languages not having "swear words" in the english sense, while maintaining "vulgar expressions". All cultures have ...
0
votes
2answers
200 views

Name of theory stating “worldview affects language structure”

I'm writing a paper on the Ju'Hoansi of South Africa for my anthropology class and I'm trying show how their egalitarian worldview might affect their language structure such as their lack of ...
0
votes
1answer
108 views

shared written lanaguage, different spoken languages

is there a name for the situation where a group of people share a common written language but speak different languages like with chinese. e.g. they can read the same newspapers but if they read out ...
4
votes
1answer
271 views

Globalized mass-media deterring language or dialects differentiation

I was wondering about how strong are the region-wide or country-wide mass-media institutions (be them newspapers or TV channels) as deterrent of language or dialects differentiation. For example, a ...