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2.1. Introduction: Language variation in media: introduction

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Agurtzane Elordui

on 25 October 2017

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Transcript of 2.1. Introduction: Language variation in media: introduction

Language variation
in media










Dialects (according to the user)
Geographic variation
Generational variation
Social variation

Functional variants (according to the context of use)
Formal/informal register
Medium: Oral/writing,...
General/ specialized

Language variation

The visibility of vernacular speech in media has increased in the last few decades (Crystal 2002)

2. Linguistic landscape:
signs, company logos, tourist memorabilia
3. Films and Fiction
comedy, drama, novel, music, television, series
5. Virtual spaces
chats, Twitter, Facebook, blogs
Which media genres and formats
favor the proliferation of local speech?
1. Advertising
of the products
4. Audience participation formats
talks, games, quiz, reality shows,…
Androutsopoulos, Jannis (2010) The study of language and space in media discourse. In Peter Auer & Jürgen E. Schmidt (eds.) Language and Space: An International Handbook of Linguistic Variation, Volume I, 740-758. Berlin, New York: de Gruyter

Eisenstein, Jacob (2014) Identifying regional dialects in online social media

The use of vernaculars as a response to globalization
Tendencies toward regionalization or localism as a response to globalization pressures may lead to a rediscovery of local linguistics values
The use of vernaculars as a consequence of media diversification
Media diversification leads to a proliferation of local media and narrow casting programs in which the celebration of local identity and culture gains priority
Parameters in language variation usage

Shifting values of localness in heteroglossic mediascapes
The proliferation of vernacular speech in the media reflects wider processes of social and institutional change:

1. The
of media system over the last decades has led to a
diversification of target audiences

2. The
digital revolution
has increased grassroots access to media production and
blurred the boundary between producers and audiences
, creating new chances for vernacular voices to be heard publicly.

Those affect changes in institutional practices of media planning and production

1. Media diversification leads to a
proliferation of local media
narrowcasting programs
: local identity and culture gains priority

2. Formats of
audience engagement
have become widely popular

Those affect the micro level of linguistic and textual processes in media

1. Tendency to
: the
use of informal speech
and conversational features in public discourse

2. An increase in the
currency of non-standard speech

Traditional ideologies of non-standardness are still widely reproduced as
a signifier of low status

1. When regional television channels reserve use of the
regional dialect exclusively for ‘local culture’ shows

2. They reinforce the
link of dialect to local rural tradition

Local speech styles may also be represented in ways that challenge these stereotypes:

London English (Cockney): a working-class marker > a marker of subcultural, street-smart style in pop music culture

Standard dialect: quality, sophisticated
Low priced supermarket, concerned with appealing to the average consumer
Linguistic Landscape: 'The language of public road signs, advertising billboards, street names,place names, commercial shop signs, and public signs on government buildings combines to form the linguistic landscape of a given territory, region, or urban agglomeration.' (Landry and Bourhis (1997, p. 25)
Top Chef, Antena 3
Geographical variants
It is a universal characteristic of human language that speakers of the
‘same’ language who live in different parts of a continuous territory do
not speak in the same way
In any one place not all people speak alike, even if they were all born there. Differences of speech are correlated with one or more social factors which apply to the speaker concerned. These factors include age, sex, race, class background, education, occupation, and income.
Social variants
An example: Spanish
Spanish participles in -ado(s) reveal a range of pronunciations:
cansado, pescado

May be pronounced in one or other of the following ways:
[-áðo], [-áðo], [-áo], [-áu]

Certain studies:

The variant

It is much more frequent in working-class speech than in that of the middle classes.
Women of all classes are seen to be substantially more resistant to total deletion of the consonant than are men.
Variants are related to social and geographical origins

a. go slow
vs go slow
b. the woman

... vs the woman
that ...
c. he
vs he
’s not

Morphosyntactic variables
Phonological Variables
Variable (ing) involves word-final -ing:

Variable (t,d) involves word-final consonant clusters. Sometimes the cluster is realised; sometimes it is not:

Phonological variants
An example: Basque
- Pronunciation of:
oan; mi
- Accents
- ogia: ogie, ogixe, ogiye
Morphosyntactic variants
- gaz/-rekin
- dot/det/dut
An example: English
In any case,
(Androutsopoulos 2010)
Almodovar. Todo sobre mi madre
DSS 2016
(you, you guys, you all) is a form of the second-person pronoun which is associated with the dialect of Southwestern Pennsylvania around the city of Pittsburgh (Johnstone et al., 2002).
(also spelled y’all) is an alternative form of the second-person pronoun, often associated with the Southeastern United States, as well as African-American English
is an intensifier that is popularly associated with Northern California (Bucholtz et al., 2007);
I got hella nervous
is a noun with Philadelphia origins (Alim, 2009) and diffuse semantics:
(1) @name ok u have heard this jawn right
(2) how long u been up in that jawn @name
(3) i did wear that jawn but it was kinda warm this week
Regional dialects in online social media
Eisenstein 2014
Regional dialects in online social media
Eisenstein 2014
Iban Garcia. Youtuberrak

Melanie Sykes:
Do you want a flake in that, love?
(Boddingtons beer advert)
ASDA supermarket
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