Chapter published in:Acquiring Sociolinguistic Variation
Edited by Gunther De Vogelaer and Matthias Katerbow
[Studies in Language Variation 20] 2017
► pp. 1–41
Chapter 1Bridging the gap between language acquisition and sociolinguistics
Introduction to an interdisciplinary topic
Despite repeated calls for in-depth research, the acquisition of patterns of sociolinguistic variation has long been an underinvestigated topic both in sociolinguistics and in language acquisition research. With the exception of a few exploratory studies, most notably Labov (1964), it has long been rare for sociolinguistic research to focus on non-adults, whereas most research on language acquisition tended to take place in a sociolinguistic vacuum (see, e.g. Mills 1985: 142 and Labov 1989: 96 for statements to this effect). Over the last few years, however, the situation seems to be changing. Two reasons may be given for this: first, and quite trivially perhaps, technical advancements are making it possible to gather, store and explore data in cheap and efficient ways, providing researchers with the necessary data to conduct empirically sound research on the topic. And second, parallel to a paradigm shift from rule-based to usage-based conceptions of grammar, linguistic variation has moved into the centre of the attention of theoretical linguistics. As a result, the acquisition of variation can now be considered an ‘emergent topic’ in research on language variation in general.The aim of this book is to offer a state-of-the-art of current research on the topic, thereby focusing on two particular objectives: (1) the acquisition of sociolinguistic variation presents itself as an interesting research topic for sociolinguists and psycholinguists working on acquisition, but also for a broad range of other sub-disciplines of linguistics, including historical linguistics, dialectology, and for researchers working in different theoretical frameworks. This book aims at bridging the gap between these disciplines and frameworks and allowing an interdisciplinary perspective on the topic; and (2) in order to enable cross-linguistic comparison, the book wants to bring together research carried out in different sociolinguistic constellations, as most obviously found in different language areas or different countries.
- 2.Research on the acquisition of variation before 2000
- 2.1General characterisation: Three important lines of research
- 2.2Second dialect acquisition and other attainment issues
- 2.3Transmitting attitudes from caregivers to children
- 2.4Children, adults, and language change
- 3.Current trends in research on acquisition of variation
- 3.1The acquisition of sociolinguistic variation as an emerging research field
- 3.2From generative grammar to variable rules
- 3.3Usage- and exemplar-based models
- 3.4Sociolinguistic cognition and cognitive sociolinguistics
- 3.4.1When sociolinguistics meets psycholinguistics
- 3.4.2Cognitive sociolinguistics, sociolinguistic cognition, acquisition of variation
- 3.4.3What sociolinguistics and psycholinguistics could bring to each other
- 4.The need for cross-linguistic research: This book
- 4.1Article summaries
- 4.2General characterisation and future perspectives
Published online: 30 September 2017
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Cited by 6 other publications
Ghyselen, Anne-Sophie & Gunther De Vogelaer
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This list is based on CrossRef data as of 31 march 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.