The Social Stratification of English in New York City

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Cambridge University Press, Nov 9, 2006 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 485 pages
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One of the first accounts of social variation in language, this groundbreaking study founded the discipline of sociolinguistics, providing the model on which thousands of studies have been based. In this second edition, Labov looks back on forty years of sociolinguistic research, bringing the reader up to date on its methods, findings and achievements. In over thirty pages of new material, he explores the unforeseen implications of his earlier work, addresses the political issues involved, and evaluates the success of newer approaches to sociolinguistic investigation. In doing so, he reveals the outstanding accomplishments of sociolinguistics since his original study, which laid the foundations for studying language variation, introduced the crucial concept of the linguistic variable, and showed how variation across age groups is an indicator of language change. Bringing Labov's pioneering study into the 21st century, this classic volume will remain the benchmark in the field for years to come.
 

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Contents

3 The social stratification of r in
40
4
58
5 The linguistic interview
87
6
96
Table 64 Derivation of the sample population
109
7 Class differentiation of the variables
129
8
171
9
199
12 Selfevaluation and linguistic security
300
13 General attitudes towards the speech of
324
14 Thestructureof theNewYork City vowel
345
Lower class Working class Lower middle class Upper middle
371
15 19662006
380
Glossary of linguistic symbols and
404
Appendix A Questionnaire for the ALS Survey
409
Appendix B Anonymous observations of casual
423

10 Other linguistic variables
241
Table 107 Average ay and aw values for all white
248
11 Subjective evaluation of the variables
265
Zero section Oh section
274
1 2 3456789 10 11
278
Appendix C Analysis of losses through
430
Questionnaire
448
Appendix E The outoftown speakers
450
Bibliography
462

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About the author (2006)

William Labov is Professor of Linguistics and Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania.

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