The Dynamics of Linguistic Variation

Corpus evidence on English past and present

ORCID logoTerttu Nevalainen | University of Helsinki
ORCID logoIrma Taavitsainen | University of Helsinki
Päivi Pahta | University of Tempere
ORCID logoMinna Korhonen | University of Helsinki
ISBN 9789027234827 | EUR 105.00 | USD 158.00
ISBN 9789027290380 | EUR 105.00 | USD 158.00
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Variability is characteristic of any living language. This volume approaches the ‘life cycle’ of linguistic variability in English using data sources that range from electronic corpora to the internet. In the spirit of the 1968 Weinreich, Labov and Herzog classic, the fifteen contributions divide into three sections, each highlighting different stages in the dynamics of English across time and space. They show, first, how increase in variability can be initiated by processes that give rise to new patterns of discourse, which can ultimately crystallize into new grammatical elements. The next phase is the spread of linguistic features and patterns of discourse, both new and well established, through the social and regional varieties of English. The final phase in this ebb and flow of linguistic variability consists of processes promoting some variable features over others across registers and regional and social varieties, thus resulting in reduced variation and increased linguistic homogeneity.
[Studies in Language Variation, 2] 2008.  viii, 339 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“The selection and order of contributions results in a coherent and comprehensive volume of cutting-edge research. The range of methodologies employed and spectrum of linguistic features and varieties of English investigated make this volume a valuable resource for anybody interested in the English language and linguistic variation.”
“[A] fine selection of articles. [...] The volume is warmly recommended to all those interested in linguistic variation and change.”

Main BIC Subject

CFB: Sociolinguistics

Main BISAC Subject

LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2008035115