STOP AND GO (AWAY): LINGUISTIC CONSEQUENCES OF NON-LOCAL ASPIRATIONS AMONG SMALL-TOWN NEWFOUNDLAND YOUTH

Sarah Knee, Gerard Van Herk

Abstract


TO UNDERSTAND THE LINGUISTIC CLIMATE of Newfoundland, one must look not only at the linguistic variation that exists among Newfoundland speakers, but also at what underlies and drives this variation. It is clear that social factors such as region play a part; Newfoundlanders from the West coast speak differently from those from the Southern Shore, etc. (Clarke 2010). But region cannot account for the differences we observe within individual speech communities. The variationist approach to sociolinguistics has described three main categories of social forces that contribute to linguistic variation: (1) who the speakers are (e.g., age, socioeconomic status, community, Labov 1966), (2) who they know and how they interact (social networks, communities of practice, Milroy 1987, Eckert 2000), and (3) who the speakers want to be (social aspirations, Chambers 2003, Van Herk, Childs and Thorburn 2009).

Keywords


Language variation; Sociolinguistics; aspirations; Newfoundland English;

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