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El Comþn Olvido: A Constructivist Approach to "Remembered Language" in Contemporary Yucatec Maya
and William C. Nichols
Charles K. and Susan E. Cook
Ullua, Eduardo and Alejandro Rafael Puccio Calvo
in Otomâ Stories
Media and Urban Space
No abstract available
Work: Language among Teens
The language of young people in their teens presents research challenges and new questions about language development and language change. Tensions between activities and language forms, as well as self-assignments of roles in learning, tell us much about how young people acquire spoken and written language. This paper examines links among work, role, and language form and use among teens who voluntarily attend youth organizations. Here they engage in projects of art or athletic programs that depend on collaborative planning, practicing, performing, and evaluating. Their discourse is shaped by the work--as distinct from jobs and chores--they see themselves doing.
Affect, and Subaltern Dialects
This paper examines cross-linguistic similarities in the intonational marking of subaltern dialects. Evidence from Israeli Hebrew is compared to evidence from social dialects of American English to show how intonation is used to evoke alternative and oppositional identities. Analysis of socially meaningful intonation is important because of its role in mediating the deployment of affect, itself a central locus for the exertion and control of social power through symbolic means.
as a Minority Minorized by Force and Communion
This paper aims to show how prisoners conform to minority community patterns and dialect which are minorized by external forces, and which simultaneously act as symbols of identity and rebellion. The sociodialect also constitutes a search for recognition, as well as an instrument of power against authority. As prisoners are restricted to a shared geographical setting, they construct distinct sociolinguistic relationships in order to not only be able to live in the community, but also to react against certain imposed social rules. Furthermore, their dialect--lunfardo--transcends the concept of identity as it attempts to replace the official language.
Bilingualism: Non-Converging Discourse As An Unmarked Choice
Non-converging discourse--the use of two different codes by interlocutors in one conversation--may often indicate conflict or lack of common ground. In these data, non-converging discourse is shown to be the unmarked choice, indexing a role relationship which involves bilingualism, cooperation, and a history of previous interaction. This norm does not preclude the use of other codeswitching strategies, however, and all language choice patterns are analyzed here within the Markedness Model as indexing new rights and obligations sets for the interlocutors.
Germany (?): Processes of Identifying, Redefining and Negotiating in Interactions
between East and West Germans
Since 1989, Germany has faced dramatic processes of change centering on the construction of a new identity at both the collective and individual levels. The challenges of these processes can be seen by examining the microanalysis of interaction, specifically, the use of categories of membership--such as "we" and "you"--and place--such as "Germany." In interactions, participants refer to categories that have developed over the years of German division like "East" and "West," and "East Germans" and "West Germans," as well as the politically and geographically united Germany in terms of "imagined communities" (Anderson 1994).
Prepausal Constraint In Tyneside English: A Discourse Level Mechanism
Of Linguistic Change
This paper arises from a more extensive variationist analysis of glottalization phenomena in the English of Tyneside in the North East of England. It focuses on the exceptions to the Prepausal Constraint (i.e. glottalized realizations of /t/ in prepausal contexts) which appear chiefly in the speech of younger working-class women, and are associated chiefly with the utterance-final grammatical tags and that, and all that, innit ('isn't it'), and wannit ('wasn't it'). It is argued that an analysis of conversational structure and conversational management procedures can contribute to an illuminating account of the PPC and its exceptions. The findings reported here are particularly relevant to an understanding of the spread of a linguistic change through the system at the level of conversational interaction.
in the Face of Dialect Death: The Case of Smith Island English
This paper examines dialect recession in two-post insular island communities in the Southeastern United States, Ocracoke, NC, and Smith Island, MD. The investigation centers on the quantitative analysis of the patterning of a long-standing feature common to both dialects--the production of /ay/ with a raised nucleus. The analysis reveals that dialect recession unexpectedly may proceed in quite different directions in different communities. It is demonstrated that whereas the Ocracoke variety is receding via accommodation to mainland varieties, the Smith Island variety is becoming more rather than less distinctive as it loses speakers.
Just Don't Do That Anymore": Patterning Dialect Change through Social
Networks and Social Transformation
Members' ties to their community provide us with important information about possible sources for social and linguistic change in progress. This paper presents findings from a case study of ThyborÀn (Denmark) which reveal that the vacillation between standardization and local dialect innovations as well as network changes are directly correlated to the effect of socio-historical events on the residents, who not only define the dialect but also transform the internal social constructs of their community. Innovative forms and long-standing isoglosses have faded as the single industry economy waned due to European Union fishing quotas and resulting social network changes.
on the Move
This paper presents some findings from a study of grammatical resources for turn-construction in social interaction in the Philippine (Austronesian) language Ilokano. Examining the (self-) initiation of repair and the construction of expanded turns, the study shows that Ilokano has grammaticized routines for the solution of universal conversational tasks that differ considerably from those of the Indo-European languages, and it suggests a "progressional" view of Ilokano grammar, i.e., an account of grammatical organization in terms of the "projections" that grammatical elements make about subsequent units of talk.
Statements: "Speaking for Another" in Therapeutic Discourse
The research here focuses on a specific linguistic form of "Speaking for another" (Schiffrin 1993) which is frequent in therapeutic discourse. It studies So-summaries, a discourse move in which a single speaker condenses and distills the thoughts and feelings of the interlocutor into a single succinct utterance, for example, "So you feel betrayed." It utilizes data from 14 hours of tape-recorded psychotherapy sessions between five client and therapist dyads to examine a paradox which arises from Schiffrin's (1993) claims: to trace levels of acceptance and response types, and to investigate the relevance of context and identity in establishing meaning.
but Strangers": Self-Disclosure and the Creation of Solidarity at Service
Encounters in America
This paper describes and analyzes the speech strategies used in service encounters, which create rapport and solidarity among strangers in American society. Focusing the analysis on the shift of discursive frame within a conversation between customers and service persons in a convenience store context, the paper demonstrates that the interactional formulas which typically create rapport and solidarity among intimates are adopted as a meta-communicative framework in the interaction of strangers in public places.
of Opposition in Korean Conversation: A Journey from Hedges to Bald-on-Records
This study explores the question of how Korean speakers voice disagreement and opposition. Based on naturally occurring conversations among Korean adults, the study analyzes opposition expressions which Korean speakers frequently employ in negotiating disagreement and opposition. Four types of formulaic expression of opposition are discussed: (1) hedges, (2) oppositional discourse markers, (3) oppositional expressive adverbials, and (4) formulaic bald-on-record oppositional expressions. Among these four, hedges are the most mitigated way of displaying opposition, while formulaic bald-on-record expressions serve as a means of expressing the most aggravated disagreement. It is claimed that Korean speakers have a range of argument expressions, which go from hedges to bald-on-records.
Linguistic Formulation of Emotion in Rwanda: Practical Implications for
a Post-Genocidal Society
This paper argues that emotion is a culturally specific and linguistically constructed component of human experience. Using proverbs as an important source of emotional discourse, we examine norms and values surrounding loss and trauma in Rwanda, with special attention to survivors' accounts of the 1994 genocide. These stories not only reflect these local norms, but point to a serious gap in understanding between Rwandans and the international aid community. Foreign specialists often overlook the critical differences between local and clinical conceptions of emotional experience. This failure to address emotion cross-culturally results in missed opportunities to provide effective trauma therapy to survivors of the Rwandan genocide.
Me a Hand!" or "Give Me a Break!": Is Chinese Verbal Irony More Than Ironic?
This essay analyzes Chinese verbal irony or fanyu (ÛìÈy) by way of reporting a study conducted in the summer of 1995 at three universities in Shanghai, China. My analysis shows that Chinese verbal irony is not necessarily an example of flouting Grice's first maxim of Quality or a clear instance of echoic interpretation. And its meanings tend to be concentrated on either end of an affective meaning-continuum. Further, fanyu is a good example of Chinese implicitness and face-work.
and Social Diffusion of Language Change: The Case of the Northern Cities
This paper addresses the question of how linguistic innovations are diffused within and across speech communities by examining data from the Northern Cities Chain Shift, a vowel change currently in progress in American English. While this change is generally considered to be a unitary phenomenon that affects speakers in various locations, a close examination of the data reveals a number of discrepancies in both the linguistic and social distribution of the shift. The paper provides a detailed examination of such discrepancies and discusses their implications for our interpretation of this change and for our understanding of the diffusion of language change in general.
Survey of the Use of Wi in Kaqchikel: Spoken and Written Language Norms
Language loss literature and local wisdom have suggested that the use of the movement particle wi is on the decline in Kaqchikel, a Mayan language spoken in the central highlands of Guatemala. This study seeks to determine if wi is used by speakers, and if their use of it corresponds to the uses prescribed by textual sources. The data show that wi is subject to a high degree of variation, which cannot be attributed to a particular social factor. Rather, I see it as a manifestation of "personal pattern variation" (Dorian 1994), which may conflict with efforts to standardize a largely unwritten language.
Comþn Olvido: A Constructivist Approach to "Remembered Language" in Contemporary
This paper demonstrates a discourse based approach to the phenomenon of "remembered language." I argue that remembered language in Yucatec Maya is motivated by linguistic ideology, not a loss of competence in an archaic language variety. Speakers evaluate descriptive language forms as pure, assign these forms the value of not-in-use and then cite them as negative icons of an ethnic past. Therefore, ideological evaluations motivate both the discourse realizations and linguistic patternment of these forms. "Remembered language" is actually an ethnically salient, sociocultural category based on a productive, Maya grammatical shape.
of the Suns: Reproducing the Production of a Nahuatl Text
No abstract available
and Role-Reversal in a Zoque Fable
This paper examines the use of inverse parallelism in the performance of a Zoque folktale entitled "te' yomo i te' tahpi" ('the woman and the hawk'). This narrative features parallelisms at every level of linguistic structure, but it is the use of inverse parallelism, or chiasmus, which is its central organizing principle. It is argued that the narrator's use of chiasmus is rhetorically effective because it exploits the potential for iconicity between syntagmatic reversals in linguistic form and the exchange of roles undertaken by the tale's two main characters.
Rhetorical Force of Parallelism in Sierra Popoluca Conversational Speech
This investigation explores the many ways in which the process of parallelism is adapted stylistically to enhance the rhetorical force of conversational speech among native speakers of the Sierra Popoluca language residing in the southern Mexican community of Soteapan, Veracruz. Through close examination of three interrelated conversational events, this analysis demonstrates a number of functions accomplished through the use of parallelism, such as providing a socially acceptable form in which to voice mild criticism of social norms. Often overlooked as an important constituent of conversation in its own right, the process of parallelism can be more fully understood as a fundamental trope in Sierra Popoluca cultural tradition.
Dueling Voices of Rush Limbaugh
The use of reported speech in the radio broadcasts of Rush Limbaugh is an example of a core cultural practice: the entextualization of "(prior) texts." Reported speech is analyzed in terms of transposition: the trope of apparently bringing any sort of prior text into the here and now. The selection and manipulation of prior texts establishes and maintains a durable, shared background between Limbaugh and his listeners. This study illustrates not only the reflexive nature of language but also how particular metapragmatic features are marshaled by a speaker for the purpose of figurating or maintaining an image of community as buttressed by "common sense."
Daatsaahá: Portrait Of A Navajo Humorist
Recently, as scholars interested in humor have begun to turn their attention from the jokelore of faceless "folk" to the repertoires and styles of living humorists, it is becoming apparent that even the most ubiquitous styles and productions have specialists whose reputations, abilities, and repertoires develop in unique ways. In the career history of Hastiin Daatsaahâ, the informal "clown" of a Navajo tribal office, we see how he and his audiences have come to attach importance to his role. Our examination of the texts of local critiques of Daatsaahâ's humorous performances reveals interesting insights about Navajo ethnopsychologies of amusement and ethnoaesthetics of humor, and fuels our optimism for stylist-centered approaches.
Constructions of Gender in a Fraternity
I show how one man in a fraternity creates his gender identity through language in three different situations. Because power is central to the construction of men's identities, I focus on how this man linguistically constructs a "powerful identity." Pete, the fraternity's vice-president, constructs his identity differently in three speech activities: in a weekly meeting, in a bar with a male friend, and in a bar with a female friend. I focus on the alignment roles that Pete indexes and the stances he creates by analyzing his use of linguistic devices such as mitigation, pronouns, and discourse markers.
Language Ideologies in Manipur
Meithei is a Tibeto-Burman language spoken by the plains dwelling Meithei people of Manipur state in Northeastern India. Conversion from the traditional animistic religion to Hinduism and the annexation of Manipur to India as a Union territory has had noticeable effects on Meithei language structure and language use. This paper discusses the present-day tension exists, often existing within the same individual, between asserting a Meithei linguistic, ethnic, and cultural identity and an Indian religious and political identity. The connection with India is precious and easily contested. Language ideology is a privileged locus where such contestation occurs.
Guises and Mapping Language Ideologies in Ukraine
In this paper I focus on language attitudes and ideologies in Ukraine, where new language policies have been an integral part of political transformations. My analyses are based on a matched guise test conducted in Ukraine in 1994-95, in which I gathered data on attitudes towards Ukrainian and Russian languages, as well as English. Here I analyze the variation of language attitudes of 1,586 college and high school students according to nationality and region. Language and politics are overtly linked in Ukrainian life, but as the matched guise test data indicate, subconscious attitudes may reveal relationships that are not obvious on the surface.
of Spanish and Spanish Speakers in the Political Economy of Anglo Spanish
Extending Hill (1993), this paper views the political economy of Anglo Spanish bilingualism through two instructional Spanish dictionaries/grammars written by and intended for border Anglo Texans. The paper specifically treats the sociolinguistic implications of a constructed Spanish in an instructional text and the constructed Mexican interlocutor. The paper will argue that, although the Spanish of these texts has none of the properties generally attributed to Southwest Anglo Spanish, these grammars reproduce the linguistic basis for unequal social relations of power.
English, White Speakers, and Language Ideology
the comments of White audience members and callers during an episode of
the Oprah Winfrey Show (1987) devoted to "so-called Black English versus
Standard English," this study outlines the process whereby "symbolic revalorization"
(Woolard & Schieffelin 1994) of minority and stigmatized language