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SYNTAX AND SOCIAL CLASS

SYNTAX AND SOCIAL CLASS ROBERT E. CALLARY Language variation is often thought of in terms of regional dialects. Regional dialectology has a long and well-documented history, especially in Western Europe and England. Recently, however, a new dimension of dialect study, social dialectology, or sociolinguistics, has arisen which has led researchers to many regular and systematic correlations between social factors and previously unexplained linguistic phenomena. By extending the data to be considered to such variables as social class membership, much linguistic behavior which was previously thought to be random and unmotivated has been shown to be regular and consistent. By far the greater part of the empirical data collected thus far in sociolinguistic research has dealt with phonological or morphological linguistic variables. This study attempts to extend these findings by investigating the relationships between social class membership and certain syntactic variables within a generative-transformational linguistic framework. Early efforts to define the relationships between linguistic performance and certain aspects of social structure include those of McDavid, Fries, Putnam and O'Hern, Harms, and Pickford's critique of the Linguistic Atlas of the United States and Canada.1 The work of Basil Bernstein has been most influential in developing social dialect theory. In a series of papers, Bernstein http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Linguistics - An Interdisciplinary Journal of the Language Sciences de Gruyter

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