Language Change AO2

Note by Dougy, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by Dougy about 8 years ago


Note on Language Change AO2, created by Dougy on 05/19/2013.

Resource summary

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Prescriptive Approach - Judgements about language change, assertive Descriptive Approach - Describes process of change, more tentative

Sapir Whorf Hypothesis: Language affects the way a speak views the worldLera Boroditsky supports - language dictates the way we think and how we conceptualise the worldLanguage determines thought or linguistic categories and usage influences thought and certain kinds of non-linguistic behaviourWhorf seen as an amateur (no degree) and is impossible to measure

Guy Deutscher (2005): Language doesn't change due to technological changeStone-Age tech didn't change but language didDoesn't change due to contact with others and their vocabularyNo person or thing changes languageAll modifiers of language are unintentionalHow language does change: Laziness, Expressive ('of course' instead of 'yes') and Analogy - different opinions of language

Peter Turgill's Norwich survey (1974): Employment of -ing ending decreased as class didAlmost 100% middle class use -ing as opposed to non-standard -in found in 95% lower class-ing increases as formality doesFemales use -ing more than males Covert Prestige - against the norm and against conventions of 'respectable' society Overt Prestige - respectable, socially acceptable behaviour/language

Jean Aitchison: Damp Spoon - Laziness with language spreads, causing language change Crumbling Castle - Ignoring 'proper' English = decay, assumes English was 'perfect' once Infectious Disease - We 'catch' 'bad language' from others and spread it Cuckoo's Nest - One particular usage becomes dominant - descriptive approach Language Web - All factors linked

Jenny Cheshire: Females more status conscious and more likely to conform to societal rulesFemales more likely to use standard English and overt prestigeMales gain popularity through covert prestige

Goodman: Expands Fairclough's 'conversationalised'Language has undergone informalisation

Howard Giles' Accommodation theory: When people interact, they adjust their speech  to accommodate othersConvergence - speaker chooses a language to fit  the other speakerDivergence - speaker uses language to distance from other speaker

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