By Dr Tony Crowley
Utilizing a re-reading of Saussure and Bahktin, the writer demonstrates the ways that language has been used to build social and cultural id in Britain and eire. for instance, he examines the methods in whcih language used to be hired to build a bourgeois public sphere in 18th-century England, and he unearths how language remains to be getting used in modern eire to articulate nationwide and political aspirations. through bringing jointly linguistic and demanding concept, this learn presents an time table for language research; one that recognizes the truth that writing approximately background has continuously been made up our minds by way of the old context, and through problems with race, category and gender.
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Additional resources for Language in History: Theories and Texts (Politics of Language Series)
1 Essentially the argument of the spatial linguists was that linguistic change is brought about by the effect of the prestigious speech community’s language in its contact with the languages of the non-dominant neighbouring speech groups. Rather than by means of direct imposition, the spatial linguists saw change as being effected by the operation of prestige on the one hand and active consent on the other. Thus the spread of any particular linguistic feature, as it passed from the dominant community through to its subordinates, would be brought about by consent rather than coercion and would eventually become universal.
A literary language is by no means confined to the limits apparently imposed upon it by literature. One only has to think of the influence of salons, of the court, and of academies. In connection with the literary language, there arises the important question of conflict with local dialects. : 21–2) The ‘important matters’ which Saussure notes then are: language and race, language and the nation, the relations between language and political history (conquest, colonisation, internal politics), language and institutions, and the relationship between the literary language and the dialects.
It would look to the role of language in the making and unmaking of nations, of forms of social identity, of ways and patterns of ideological and cultural beliefs. In short, it would consider the modes in which language becomes important for its users not as a faculty which they all share at an abstract level, but as a practice in which they all participate in very different ways, to very different effects, under very different pressures, in their everyday lives. It would seek neither the abstract linguistic structure fixed in a static present nor the evolutionary unfolding of linguistic elements in empty time.
Language in History: Theories and Texts (Politics of Language Series) by Dr Tony Crowley