The Discursive Construction of the Scots Language

Education, politics and everyday life

| Lancaster University
ISBN 9789027206428 | EUR 95.00 | USD 143.00
ISBN 9789027271341 | EUR 95.00 | USD 143.00
This monograph is about how the Scots language is discursively constructed, both from ‘above’ (through texts such as educational policies, debates in parliament and official websites) and from ‘below’ (in focus group discussions among Scottish people). It uses the interdisciplinary discourse-historical approach to critical discourse analysis to examine what discursive strategies are used in different texts, and also to investigate salient features of context. This allows a broader discussion of the role of this language in Scotland, and how different ways of constructing a language can percolate through society, appearing in both important, elite texts and discussions among ordinary people. It thus contributes to the body of knowledge about contemporary Scots, but also expands the range of possible applications for critical discourse analysis approaches.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“This excellent volume provides a model which scholars will do well to imitate in future studies. Detailed analysis provides a rich insight into the discursive construction of Scots, its tensions, contradictions, and ideological positioning. The discussion of political and personal discourses makes clear connections to policy and practice in relation to Scots.”
“Unger’s book is unique in proving a three-dimensional portrait of the use and treatment of Scots alongside attitudes to the language. The extent to which political change alters perceptions of language varieties lies at the centre of the book; this can be extrapolated to similar contexts in other parts of the world.”
“Johann Unger makes a fresh and fascinating contribution to the study of Scots. Uncovering the 'real violence' to which many Scots speaking children were subjected and examining this in theoretical terms is significant in itself: this is a grossly under-researched area and he is to be commended for opening up discussion about it. In a compelling and accessible narrative which encompasses the political and social changes taking place in Scotland today, Johann Unger juxtaposes the experiences and views of Scots speakers with the fast moving world of top level policy development. I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in the Scots language.”
“Unger’s monograph is much more than a fascinating analysis of the Scots language; it also provides an exemplary research model that scholars will do well to emulate in their future work. The discourse-historical approach proves itself to be an effective tool for analyzing a complex social phenomenon, and by conducting CDA in the relevant historical contexts, new and deeper insights are made possible. Unger’s careful selection of sample texts and his thoughtful design of focus groups can be highly recommended as a model for learning and teaching this discourse analysis methodology. All in all, this monograph is both an exceptional study of Scottish culture from a linguistic perspective and a valuable resource for students and scholars of CDA.”
Cited by

Cited by 20 other publications

No author info given
2014. Publications Received. Language in Society 43:2  pp. 263 ff. Crossref logo
No author info given
2020.  In Speaking for the Nation [Discourse Approaches to Politics, Society and Culture, 88], Crossref logo
No author info given
2021.  In Politics, Ethnicity and the Postcolonial Nation [Discourse Approaches to Politics, Society and Culture, 93], Crossref logo
Barakos, Elisabeth
2016.  In Discursive Approaches to Language Policy,  pp. 23 ff. Crossref logo
Barakos, Elisabeth & Johann W. Unger
2016.  In Discursive Approaches to Language Policy,  pp. 1 ff. Crossref logo
Capstick, Tony
2016.  In Multilingual Literacies, Identities and Ideologies,  pp. 229 ff. Crossref logo
Costa, James
2015. Can Schools Dispense with Standard Language? Some Unintended Consequences of Introducing Scots in a Scottish Primary School. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 25:1  pp. 25 ff. Crossref logo
Douglas, Fiona
2019.  In The Handbook of World Englishes,  pp. 17 ff. Crossref logo
Forchtner, Bernhard & Christian Schneickert
2016. Collective learning in social fields: Bourdieu, Habermas and critical discourse studies. Discourse & Society 27:3  pp. 293 ff. Crossref logo
Horrod, Sarah
2020. ‘Embedded into the core’: The discursive construction of ‘policy’ in higher education learning and teaching documents and its recontextualisation in practices. Discourse & Society 31:5  pp. 478 ff. Crossref logo
Kremer, Joanna & Kristine Horner
2016.  In Discursive Approaches to Language Policy,  pp. 159 ff. Crossref logo
Liu, Qing
2019. The cultural dilemma in the process of uniting Chinese and Western medicine from 1940 to 1950. The Journal of Chinese Sociology 6:1 Crossref logo
McDermott, Philip
2019. From ridicule to legitimacy? ‘Contested languages’ and devolved language planning. Current Issues in Language Planning 20:2  pp. 121 ff. Crossref logo
Milani, Tommaso M.
2015. Language and citizenship. Journal of Language and Politics 14:3  pp. 319 ff. Crossref logo
Savski, Kristof
2016.  In Discursive Approaches to Language Policy,  pp. 51 ff. Crossref logo
Savski, Kristof
2016. Analysing voice in language policy: plurality and conflict in Slovene government documents. Language Policy 15:4  pp. 505 ff. Crossref logo
Savski, Kristof
2017. Language policy at times of instability and struggle: the impact of fluctuating will and competing agendas on a Slovene language strategy. Current Issues in Language Planning 18:3  pp. 283 ff. Crossref logo
Savski, Kristof
2018. The roles of field and capital in negotiating language policy in the Slovene parliament. Journal of Language and Politics 17:1  pp. 24 ff. Crossref logo
Sebba, Mark
2019. Named into being? Language questions and the politics of Scots in the 2011 census in Scotland. Language Policy 18:3  pp. 339 ff. Crossref logo
Unger, Johann W
2016. The interdisciplinarity of critical discourse studies research. Palgrave Communications 2:1 Crossref logo

This list is based on CrossRef data as of 20 april 2022. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.

Subjects & Metadata
BIC Subject: CFG – Semantics, Pragmatics, Discourse Analysis
BISAC Subject: LAN009000 – LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2013022431 | Marc record