This book presents a critical synthesis of sociolinguistics that centers on
the study of language variation and change, and identifies opportunities
for future research.
Since the inception of sociolinguistics four decades ago, the correlation
of dependent linguistic variables has provided the theoretical core of the
discipline. This volume reviews the essential findings that form its
foundation and shows how empirical explorations have made it the most
stimulating field in the contemporary study of language.
Sociolinguistic Theory discusses the linguistic variable and its
significance, crucial social variables such as social stratification, sex
and age, and the cultural purposes of linguistic variation. This second
edtion has been updated to incorporate new findings and expand on the
discussion of communicative competence and developmental sociolinguistics.