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Language and Society : An Introduction, PDF eBook

Language and Society : An Introduction PDF


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Language and Society is a broad introduction to the interaction of language and society, intended for undergraduate students majoring in any academic discipline. The book discusses the complex socio-political roles played by large, dominant languages around the world and how the growth of major national and official languages is threatening the continued existence of smaller, minority languages. As individuals adopt new ways of speaking, many languages are disappearing, others are evolving into hybrid languages with distinctive new forms, and even long-established languages are experiencing significant change, with young speakers creating novel expressions and innovative pronunciations. Making use of a wide range of case studies selected from the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa, Andrew Simpson describes and explains key factors causing language variation and change which relate to societal structures and the expression of group and personal identity. The volume also examines how speakers' knowledge of language acts as an important force controlling access to education, advances in employment and the development of social status. Additional topics discussed in the volume focus on the global growth of English, gendered patterns of language use, and the influence of language on perception.


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