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Language Change Revision…read more

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Amelioration: Changing the words definition
from negative to positive
LEXIS Pejoration: Changing the words meaning from
Borrowing/ Loan words: Intro of words from positive to negative
on language to another(can be anglicised or Weakening: When words lose some of their
remain similar to original spelling + original force or strength (E.g `Soon' now means
pronunciation in the near future but used to mean immediately)
Suffixes: Addition of bound morphemes to the
end of the rood word Narrowing: The word becomes more specific in
Prefixes: The addition of a bound morpheme its meaning (E.g `Meat' orignally meant food in
to beginning of a root word general, but now applies to animal flesh)
Affixation: The addition of bound morphemes Broadening: When meaning of a word broadens,
to an existing word so that it retains its old meaning but takes on
Clipping: A new word made from shortening added meaning as well (E.g `Holiday' meant `Holy
an existing one Day' a day of religious importance, but now
Initialism: A word made from initial letters means a day where one does not have to work)
each being pronounced
Metaphor: Words often acquire new meanings
Acronym: A lexicalised word made up from
the initial letters of a phrases sounded as a because they begin to be used metaphorically (E.
word g `Onion Bag' refers to the net of a goal in
Proprietary names: Name given to a product football as well as a bag of onions)
by one organisation becomes the name Euphemism: A mild or inoffensive way of
commonly used for the same product (E.g describing something distasteful or unpleasant (E.
hoover) g `civilian casualties' are `collateral damage')
Eponym: Name of a person after whom
something is named Idiom: Sayings that din't make sense if you
Lexicon: the vocabulary of language literally interpret them (E.g `It's raining cats and
Archaism: an old word or phrase no longer in dogs')
general spoken or written lang…read more

Slide 3

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Understanding Language Change
· English Lexicon: words enter and leave language
or change meanings
· Syntax between earlier forms and later forms of
· Phonology of spoken English and it's
representation in written texts
· Graphology (inc. typography + orthography) how
texts are arranged on a page, font tyles and their
punctuation and spelling
· Discourse structure and the organisation of texts…read more

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Influences on Language Change
Migration, Travel, the British Empire and Globalisation
-People move to different parts of the world
-Some intro lang. is absorbed into local one
-OR (in case of Brit. Emp.) can become the dominant in the
colonised country
esp. as lang. of power and government
(E.g India still use English as lang. of admin)
-New food + cultural experiences e.g curry, tea, tapas,
espresso, pain au chocolat
-Globalisation latter 20th Century developed English into
the world impact of technology and American English
E.G Shopping = global business with designers names +
clothing brands etc
- Can be synonymous with ideas of Englishness (E.g Marks
& Spencers)
Wars and Invasions
-Norman conquest and Germanic tribes
-Many synonyms as result
-Lang of warfare e.g collateral damage, neutralise the
-Used to make war seem better e.g `friendly fire;'
Trade, working practices and new inventions
-New inventions e.g dishwasher, Macintosh coat,
internet different origins of these words
-Surnames link to previous occupations…read more

Slide 5

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Influences on Language Change
Science and Technology
-18th / 19th Century- scientific and medical advances the
prestige of Greek and Latin E.g `Chloroform , biology,
-Neologisms were needed to name the latest of these
-Sometimes use the words with higher status i.e Greek +
E.G BSE sounds more serious that `mad cow disease'
The Media
-Print, television, internet, mobile phones
-Lang less formal i.e more like speech
-Contemporary society (WAG) (GOTCHA)
-Blogs and Social Networking sites
Speech Styles
-Omission (missing out sounds from words e.g `angin')
-Assimilation (One phoneme is affected by the one next to
it e.g `don't you becomes `dohnchu')
Social and cultural changes
-Changes in attitude to class and social class
-Acceptability of some language use (political correctness)
-Fashion and Culture
-Affects register and grammar
-Youth socialists and non standard form…read more

Slide 6

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Exploring Lexical change
How we create new words:
·Borrow: fill the gap in our lang. or allow us another word for the same object
·Adapt: Out of laziness or efficient to make new words
·Create new ones: when we don't have anything that will do
-Synonyms at our disposal because of varied influences and are used in different
modes (speech and writing) and context (various audience) and create different
registers (e.g in legal discourse)
-Some situations particularly to impress e.g to demonstrate knowledge and
understanding uni interview use a Latinate word but more colloquial words when
talking to mates
-Using distinctive register allows you to converge or diverge from your audience as
you wish, to either gain either overt or covert prestige
Covert Prestige: referes to status speakers
who choose not to adopt a standard dialect get
from a particular group in society
Overt Prestige: status speakers get from using the
most official form of a language. (POSH SPEAKING)…read more

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