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The Handbook of Historical Sociolinguistics

ISBN: 978-1-118-25726-5
704 pages
February 2012, Wiley-Blackwell
The Handbook of Historical Sociolinguistics (111825726X) cover image
Written by an international team of leading scholars, this groundbreaking reference work explores the nature of language change and diffusion, and paves the way for future research in this rapidly expanding interdisciplinary field.
  • Features 35 newly-written essays from internationally acclaimed experts that reflect the growth and vitality of the burgeoning area of historical sociolinguistics
  • Examines how sociolinguistic theoretical models, methods, findings, and expertise can be used to reconstruct a language's past in order to explain linguistic changes and developments
  • Bridges the gap between the past and the present in linguistic studies
  • Structured thematically into sections exploring: origins and theoretical assumptions; methods for the sociolinguistic study of the history of languages; linguistic and extra-linguistic variables; historical dialectology, language contact and diffusion; and attitudes to language
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Plates x

Figures x

Maps xii

Tables xiii

Notes on Contributors xv

Preface xxvii
Teresa Fanego

Introduction 1
J. Camilo Conde-Silvestre & Juan M. Hernández-Campoy

Part I Origins and Theoretical Assumptions 9

1 Diachrony vs Synchrony: the Complementary Evolution of Two (Ir)reconcilable Dimensions 11
Jean Aitchison

2 Historical Sociolinguistics: Origins, Motivations, and Paradigms 22
Terttu Nevalainen and Helena Raumolin-Brunberg

3 Social History and the Sociology of Language 41
Robert McColl Millar

Part II Methods for the Sociolinguistic Study of the History of Languages 61

4 The Application of the Quantitative Paradigm to Historical Sociolinguistics: Problems with the Generalizability Principle 63
Juan M. Hernández-Campoy and Natalie Schilling

5 The Uniformitarian Principle and the Risk of Anachronisms in Language and Social History 80
Alexander Bergs

6 The Use of Linguistic Corpora for the Study of Linguistic Variation and Change: Types and Computational Applications 99
Pascual Cantos

7 Editing the Medieval Manuscript in its Social Context 123
Nila Vázquez and Teresa Marqués-Aguado

8 Medical, Official, and Monastic Documents in Sociolinguistic Research 140
Laura Esteban-Segura

9 The Use of Private Letters and Diaries in Sociolinguistic Investigation 156
Stephan Elspass

10 The Use of Literary Sources in Historical Sociolinguistic Research 170
K. Anipa

11 Early Advertising and Newspapers as Sources of Sociolinguistic Investigation 191
Carol Percy

Part III Linguistic and Socio-demographic Variables 211

12 Orthographic Variables 213
Hanna Rutkowska and Paul Rössler

13 Phonological Variables 237
Anna Hebda

14 Grammatical Variables 253
Anita Auer and Anja Voeste

15 Lexical-Semantic Variables 271
Joachim Grzega

16 Pragmatic Variables 293
Andreas H. Jucker and Irma Taavitsainen

17 Class, Age, and Gender-based Patterns 307
Agnieszka Kielkiewicz-Janowiak

18 The Role of Social Networks and Mobility in Diachronic Sociolinguistics 332
Juan Camilo Conde-Silvestre

19 Race, Ethnicity, Religion, and Castes 353
Rajend Mesthrie

Part IV Historical Dialectology, Language Contact, Change, and Diffusion 367

20 The Teleology of Change: Functional and Non-Functional Explanations for Language Variation and Change 369
Paul T. Roberge

21 Internally- and Externally-Motivated Language Change 387
Raymond Hickey

22 Lexical Diffusion and the Regular Transmission of Language Change in its Sociohistorical Context 408
Brian D. Joseph

23 The Timing of Language Change 427
Mieko Ogura

24 Innovation Diffusion in Sociohistorical Linguistics 451
David Britain

25 Historical Dialectology: Space as a Variable in the Reconstruction of Regional Dialects 465
Anneli Meurman-Solin

26 Linguistic Atlases: Empirical Evidence for Dialect Change in the History of Languages 480
Roland Kehrein

27 Historical Sociolinguistic Reconstruction Beyond Europe: Case Studies from South Asia and Fiji 501
Matthew Toulmin

28 Multilingualism, Code-switching, and Language Contact in Historical Sociolinguistics 520
Herbert Schendl

29 The Impact of Migratory Movements on Linguistic Systems: Transplanted Speech Communities and Varieties from a Historical Sociolinguistic Perspective 534
Daniel Schreier

30 Convergence and Divergence in World Languages 552
Roger Wright

Part V Attitudes to Language 569

31 Sociolinguistics and Ideologies in Language History 571
James Milroy

32 Language Myths 585
Richard J. Watts

33 Linguistic Purism 607
Nils Langer and Agnete Nesse

34 The Reconstruction of Prestige Patterns in Language History 626
Anni Sairio and Minna Palander-Collin

35 Written Vernaculars in Medieval and Renaissance Times 639
Catharina Peersman

Index 655

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Juan Manuel Hernández-Campoy is Professor in Sociolinguistics at the University of Murcia, Spain, where he teaches undergraduate courses on English Sociolinguistics, Dialectology, and the History of English, as well as sociolinguistic research methods for postgraduate students. His books include Diccionario de Sociolingüística (with P. Trudgill, 2007), Metodología de la Investigación Sociolingüística (with M. Almeida, 2005), and Geolingüística (1999).

Juan Camilo Conde-Silvestre is Professor in English Historical Linguistics at the University of Murcia, Spain, where he teaches on the History of the English Language and Research Methods in Language Variation and Change. His books include Sociolinguistica Histórica (2007), Sociolinguistics and the History of English (with J.M. Hernández-Campoy, 2005) and Variation and Linguistic Change in English (with J.M. Hernández-Campoy, 1999).

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“In this respect, the Handbook represents both an excellent summary of the state of the art in historical sociolinguistics and a good starting point for further research.”  (Linguistlist, 1 April 2013)

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