Chapter published in:Modeling World Englishes: Assessing the interplay of emancipation and globalization of ESL varieties
Edited by Sandra C. Deshors
[Varieties of English Around the World G61] 2018
► pp. 133–162
Modeling World Englishes from a cross-linguistic perspective
The increasing diversification of English qua World Englishes contributes to cross-linguistic variation. Still, we tend to consider and model varieties of English from a language-internal perspective. Taking Mair’s (2013) World System of Englishes as a starting point, I here explore how to model World Englishes from a cross-linguistic typological perspective, commenting on the tension between normative pressure and cross-linguistic tendencies and generalizations. Variation studies and language typology investigate micro and macro variation, respectively, though the empirical domains in focus and the methodologies employed show considerable overlap. Moreover, the traditional distinction between language and variety becomes increasingly difficult to draw in today’s multilingual and highly interconnected world. I examine the commonalities and differences of the two approaches to language variation that have largely been working independently of one another focusing on language universals and the ways that grammatical phenomena from World Englishes match up against them. Varieties of English attest a good deal of typological variation, though they also offer curious features rarely found in other languages.
Keywords: macro variation, micro variation, typology, variation studies
Published online: 13 September 2018
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