This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."
Ethnography, Superdiversity and Linguistic Landscapes
Superdiversity has rendered familiar places, groups and practices extraordinarily complex, and the traditional tools of analysis need rethinking. In this book, Jan Blommaert investigates his own neighbourhood in Antwerp, Belgium, from a complexity perspective. Using an innovative approach to linguistic landscaping, he demonstrates how multilingual signs can be read as chronicles documenting the complex histories of a place. The book can be read in many ways: as a theoretical and methodological contribution to the study of linguistic landscape; as one of the first monographs which addresses the sociolinguistics of superdiversity; or as a revision of some of the fundamental assumptions of social science through the use of chaos and complexity theory as an inspiration for understanding the structures of contemporary social life.