Language in Society: An Introduction to Sociolinguistics / Edition 2

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Overview

Why have 1500 separate languages developed in the Pacific islands of Melanesia? Why do Danes understand Norwegian better than Norwegians understand Danish? Why is a Cornish accent rated higher than Cockney speech but lower than Oxford English? Are British and American English different languages? Linguistics tends to ignore the relationship between languages and the societies in which they are spoken, while sociology generally overlooks the role of language in the constitution of society. Suzanne Romaine provides a clear, lively, and accessible introduction to the field of sociolinguistics, emphasizing the constant interaction between society and language. She discusses both traditional and more recent issues such as language and social class, language and gender, language in education, pidgins and creoles, and language change. She shows how our linguistic choices are motivated by social factors, and how certain ways of speaking come to be vested with symbolic value. In her examples she draws on studies of cultures all over the world, including her own extensive field work in Papua New Guinea, Hawaii, and Britain.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Refreshingly up-to-date, with a broad range of pertinent examples. It deserves to become the standard introduction to that most basic of sciences, sociolinguistics. Top marks!"--John R. Perry, University of Chicago

"An engaging introductory book, easy to read and accessible enough for undergraduate students while being current and detailed enough for a graduate level introductory courses....A good substitute for Trudgill's....My students were also pleased with the affordability of the text."--Joaquin S. Vila, Mankato State University

"Provides an excellent foundation for students in introductory courses. Excellent resource to supplement multicultural courses in speech-language pathology and audiology."--Adele Proctor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

"An up-to-date, somtimes issue oriented, and very readable introductory text. Good examples used."--Brian Stross, University of Texas

"Would recommend this book strongly as a general introduction to the study of language....It should be read before books on syntax or others on 'sociolinguistics' because it clearly lays before the reader the essentials of language as a tool for communication in a human context. Readable and informative."--Robert Austerlitz, Columbia University

"This appears to be an ideal text for my course, Language and Culture."--Harold R. Battersby, SUNY-Geneseo

"This book is a valuable introduction to the field of sociolinguistics for upper-level undergraduates and graduate students. It is a readable yet thorough study which offers both the traditional viewpoint and alternative perspectives on a 'still rather young' discipline."--Language In Society

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198731924
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2001
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 1,392,514
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 5.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Professor Suzanne Romaine is Merton Professor of English Language at the University of Oxford and author of a number of books.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
1 Language in Society/Society in Language 1
2 Language Choice 33
3 Sociolinguistic Patterns 67
4 Language and Gender 99
5 Linguistic Change in Social Perspective 134
6 Pidgin and Creole Languages 162
7 Linguistic Problems as Societal Problems 191
8 Conclusions 221
Index 229
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