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Linguistic relativity Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Linguistic Cues for Children

How does linguistic variation cue representations of a speaker’s social identity and, presumably, stereotypes about relevant social groups? Although studies have indicated that phonetic variation in speech may activate social stereotypes (Purnell, Idsardi & Baugh, 1999), research on the mechanisms of this process has been scant. The term “stereotype” was introduced into the variations of sociolinguistic literature in Labov’s (1973) taxonomy of language forms charged with broad social meaning, reprised in Labov (2001). The first element in this classification, “indicators”, are variables whose use is restricted to certain social groups, but whose use “shows zero degree of social awareness and are difficult to detect for both linguists and native speakers” (Labov 2001, p. 196). “Markers”, the second category, occur when…