ANTHRO STUDY GUIDE 5-7 - Chapter 5 Language and...

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Chapter 5 Language and Communication What is sociolinguistics and some examples No language is a uniform system in which everyone talks just like everyone else. Linguistic performance (what people actually say) is the concern of sociolinguists. The field of sociolinguistics investigates relationships between social and linguistic variation, or language in its social context. How do different speakers use a given language? How do linguistic features correlate with social stratification, including class, ethnic, and gender differences Stratification: We use and evaluate speech in the context of extralinguistic forces—social, political, and economic. style shifts: Whether bilingual or not, we all vary our speech in different contexts; we engage in style shifts . In certain parts of Europe, people regularly switch dialects. gender : According to Robin Lakoff, the use of certain types of words and expressions has been associated with women's traditional lesser power in American society (see also Tannen 1990). For example, Oh dear, Oh fudge,and Goodness!are less forceful than Helland Damn.Watch thelips of a disgruntled player in a football game. What's the likelihood he's saying “Phooey on you”? Women are more likely to use such adjectives as adorable, charming, sweet, cute, lovely,
others, and benefit from theirs.Kinesics and Culture of KinesicsKinesicsis the study of communication through body movements, stances, gestures, and facial expressions. Linguists pay attention not only to what is said but to how it is said, and to features besides language itself that convey meaning. A speaker's enthusiasm is conveyed not only through words but also through facial expressions, gestures, and other signs of animation. We use gestures, such as a jab of the hand, for emphasis. We use verbal and nonverbal ways of communicating our moods: enthusiasm, sadness, joy, regret. We vary our intonation and the pitch or loudness of our voices. We communicate through strategic pauses, and even by being silent.Pidgin versus Creole, acculturation versus enculturationSuch languages develop from pidgins, languages that form in situations of acculturation, when different societies come into contact and must devise a system of communication. Pidgins based

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