The localization of global linguistic variants
Globalization has been defined as the process whereby “events happening in one place … impact upon many other places, often remote in time and space” (Urry 2003: 39). This paper examines the impact of two globally available linguistic resources — the quotatives be like and go — in two spatially discontinuous localities. The investigation of the local processes that are involved in the adoption and negotiation of these global newcomers provides a holistic as well as a particularized view on the sociolinguistic mechanisms of globalization. I will demonstrate that by way of creatively adapting linguistic innovations, speakers can participate in global trends, yet do so in a highly localized and idiosyncratic manner. A micro-linguistic analysis of the emerging local practises allows us to situate localized linguistic processes into a “wider picture of structural becoming” (Blommaert 2003: 613), and provides one step forward towards our understanding of the development and/or maintenance of social spatiality.
Keywords: localization, globalization, quotatives, space, go, like
Published online: 25 January 2008
Cited by other publications
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