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Words in Time and Place: Exploring Language Through the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary

By David Crystal

Offers a unique view of the English language and its development, and includes witty commentary and anecdotes along the way.


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The Indo-European Controversy: Facts and Fallacies in Historical Linguistics

By Asya Pereltsvaig and Martin W. Lewis

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."


Academic Paper


Title: Cognitive and social forces in dialect shift: Gradual change in London Asian speech
Author: Devyani Sharma
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Queen Mary, University of London
Author: Lavanya Sankaran
Institution: Queen Mary, University of London
Linguistic Field: Cognitive Science; Phonetics; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Punjabi
English
Abstract: This study examines the retention of a non-native dialect feature by British Asians in London. We examine the use of one Punjabi feature (t-retroflexion) and one British feature (t-glottaling) across three groups: first-generation non-native immigrants and two age groups of second-generation British Asians. Cognitively oriented models predict that non-native features will either be innately blocked (Chambers, 2002) or reallocated by native generations. A socially oriented model allows for more gradual change. Contrary to the cognitive view, the older second generation neither blocks nor clearly reallocates use of t-retroflexion; they closely mirror the first generation's non-native use. However, they simultaneously control nativelike t-glottaling, reflecting a robust bidialectal ability. It is the younger second generation who exhibit focused reallocation in the form and function of t-retroflexion. This 20-year lag corresponds to major changes in demographics and race relations in the community over 5 decades. The study shows that acquisition of the local dialect and retention of exogenous features should be seen as independently constrained rather than as mutually exclusive.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Language Variation and Change Vol. 23, Issue 3, which you can READ on Cambridge's site .



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