Download Why Do Linguistics?: Reflective Linguistics and the Study of by Fiona English PDF

By Fiona English

What can we want to know approximately language and why can we want to know it? This publication exhibits how viewing the realm via a linguistics lens will help us to appreciate how we converse with one another and why we do it within the methods we do. primarily this e-book is set noticing. it truly is approximately encouraging readers to concentrate on the language that surrounds them.

The publication addresses primary linguistic questions reminiscent of: the place do people's ideals approximately language come from? Who comes to a decision what language we should always converse? How will we decide upon how you can exhibit what we suggest? It introduces a suite of functional instruments for language research and, utilizing examples of genuine communicative job together with overheard conversations, fb posts and public bulletins, exhibits how this type of research works and what it will probably let us know approximately social interaction.

Exploring language and language use from a social, intercultural and multilingual viewpoint, the authors show the relevance of linguistics in figuring out day by day interplay. This e-book may help readers not just to develop into proficient, energetic observers of language for its personal sake, but additionally so one can tackle and problem the various misconceptions, assumptions and prejudices that so frequently underlie public dialogue of language issues.

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Additional resources for Why Do Linguistics?: Reflective Linguistics and the Study of Language

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Distance between the writer and the reader. This is despite the fact that the two participants are on first-name terms, though it is worth also pointing out that the absence of a salutation (dear, hi) and the use of the rather remote closing (regards) further adds to the sense of entitlement apparently claimed by the writer. ’. But why did I react in that way? The answer lies in the context of the email – what kind of action was being expected and by whom? – and the reason for my reaction lies in the writer’s misjudgement of register.

We look at this very important aspect of language use in some detail in Chapter 11 (‘Translanguaging’). Is this conception of the value of English as a symbolic resource what underlay the students’ lack of attention to linguistic detail? If so, then it is unfortunate that such conceptions do not tend to travel well. What might be acceptable on a public campaign poster in the subcontinent, where English has both symbolic and linguistic value, appears sloppy, to say the least, in the British context, where the symbolic value of English as English is zero.

6╇ Conclusion Unpredictability can be frustrating and puzzling when we try to analyse language. Indeed, as Cameron (2012b) points out, some people just feel very uncomfortable with language change, feeling it to be somehow indicative of other kinds of (unwished-for) change in society itself. And yet change must be embraced, for non-fixedness is not just something that complicates matters, it is a defining feature of language itself. Ideas about language prestige, appropriacy, quality, standardness, even grammatical correctness itself are in a state of flux, whether this is immediately visible or not, and it is the job of the language noticer to try to work out what is happening beneath the surface.

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