1language_ideology - LANGUAGE IDEOLOGY Language ideology Definitions Linguistic ideology/Language ideology Sets of beliefs about language

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LANGUAGE IDEOLOGY
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Language ideology: Definitions ‘Linguistic ideology/Language ideology’: ‘Sets of beliefs about language articulated by users as a rationalization or justification of perceived language structure and use ’ (Kroskrity quoting Silverstein, p. 403) ‘The cultural system of ideas about social and linguistic relationships, together with their loading of moral and political interests’ (Irvine 1989:255) ‘Shared bodies of commonsense notions about the nature of language in the world’ (Rumsey 1990:346)
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Some examples: Rationalization or justification ”: 1. ‘It is ungrammatical to say ‘ He didn’t catch nothin(g) ’, because two negatives make a positive’ “Standard” English has ‘ negative polarity (He did n’t catch any thing, * n’t no thing ) “Standard” Spanish has negative concord ’, e.g. No enganchó nada not caught.3sgsubj.Past nothing’ We would not want to say that Standard Spanish, a major world language with a thousand-year-old literary and scientific tradition, is “illogical” or “ungrammatical”. The statement above, then, is not a scientific fact about language, but an expression of ideology. Notice that this rationalization exhibits ‘ political interest ’ because it assigns ‘ungrammaticality’ to rural and working-class varieties of American English that have negative concord, but not to urban middle-class varieties that have negative polarity.
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Some examples: Silverstein says language ideologies can be “articulated”. But is this always true? Many language ideologies are not usually talked about. They do not rise to the level of ‘ discursive consciousness ’* but instead operate at the level of practical consciousness’*. They are not talked about, but must be inferred from other sources of evidence. The next slide has an example. * Giddens, Anthony. 1979. Central Problems in Social Theory .
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language ideologies ‘I think for all intents and purposes we have a deal. We have a draft that cannot be improved upon,’ said Planning Minister Barham Salih, a Kurd. ‘No one could be entirely happy with what we have, but while some are opposed, many Sunnis expressed happiness.’ (Finer and Fekeiki, Washington Post Aug. 26, 2005) ‘The pro-War talking point on the collapse of the negotiations over the [Iraqi] constitution is that ‘some Sunnis’ oppose the new constitution.’ ( www.juancole.com Aug. 27, 2005; Juan Cole argued that in fact Sunni opposition was nearly unanimous) How does the ‘pro-War talking point’, repeated uncritically in almost all U.S. media at the time, follow from the statement reported in the Washington Post ? It follows because of unspoken ideologies about the connection
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This note was uploaded on 05/06/2009 for the course ANTH 276 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at University of Arizona- Tucson.

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1language_ideology - LANGUAGE IDEOLOGY Language ideology Definitions Linguistic ideology/Language ideology Sets of beliefs about language

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