Accents and dialects theories

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  • Accents & Dialects theorists
    • Peter Trudgill
      • descriptivist
      • covert/overt prestige
      • Overt prestige is nationally recognised
      • Covert prestige comes from not identifying with the standard of a language
      • Found that women use prestige variant more than men of the same class
      • Using the non-standard variable is not just a social class thing, it is also a male thing
    • William Lambert/ Howard Giles
      • Matched Guise experiment
      • Investigation into the true attitudes towards different accents and dialects
    • David Graddol, **** Leith & Joan Swann
      • Standardisation
      • 4 stages
      • Implementation- discouraging the use of alternative language varieties
      • Elaboration- ensuring new language can be used for a wide range of functions
      • Codification- reduction of internal variability in a selected variety and the establishment of grammatical norms
      • Selection-  the variety selected is usually that of the most popular group
    • Howard Giles
      • Accomodation theory
      • Convergence vs Divergence
      • Focuses on changes in speech and vocal patterns
      • People adapt their language according to who they are speaking to
    • William Labov
      • Mathas's vineyard
      • Using non-standard forms and regional variations created identity amonst thee close-knit community on the island
      • Younger generations/ local residents adapt speech to accomodate visitors
      • Fishermen varied dipthongs to seek solidarity and covert prestige
    • Paul Kerswill
      • Dialect Levelling
      • Local variations of speech lose their distinctive regional features in favour of a more mainstream dialect
      • Southern speakers more towards the standard
      • Linguistic variation associated more with youth culture
    • John Honey
      • Children should be taught standard English at school
      • Gives them equal life opportunities
      • Disadvantaged if they do not know how to use it


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