Culture and Language Development: Language Acquisition and Language Socialization in a Samoan Village

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CUP Archive, Aug 26, 1988 - Family & Relationships - 255 pages
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As children are learning to become competent members of their society, so also are they learning to become competent speakers of their language. In other words socialisation and language acquisition take place at the same time in a child's experience. In this book, Elinor Ochs explores the complex interaction of these two processes. Focusing in particular on the experiences of children in Samoa, Ochs examines both the cognitive and socio-cultural dimensions of children's language development. She shows that language competence includes not only knowledge of grammatical principles and sentence construction but also knowledge of the norms that link language to social and cognitive context; and that local social and cultural systems as well as children's individual psychological and biological capacities, organise their understanding and production of particular language constructions. This innovative study will appeal widely to anthropologists, developmental psychologists, psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, communication specialists and educationists interested in child development and caregiver-child communication.
  

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Contents

Methodology
40
grammar
53
village
71
variation and acquisition
86
the twoconstituent bias
105
Clarification
128
Affect social control and the Samoan child
145
The linguistic expression of affect
168
Literacy instruction in a Samoan village
189
Language as symbol and tool
210
Transcription conventions
228
References
238
Index
253
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