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LINGUIST List 25.1453

Wed Mar 26 2014

Books: In Search of Jane Austen: van Ostade

Editor for this issue: Justin Petro <justinlinguistlist.org>

Date: 25-Mar-2014
From: Taylor Coe <taylor.coeoup.com>
Subject: In Search of Jane Austen: van Ostade
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Title: In Search of Jane Austen
Subtitle: The Language of the Letters
Published: 2014
Publisher: Oxford University Press
                http://www.oup.com/us

Book URL: http://global.oup.com/academic/product/in-search-of-jane-austen-9780199945115

Author: Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade
Hardback: ISBN: 9780199945115 Pages: 304 Price: U.S. $ 65.00
Abstract:

Along with Shakespeare, Jane Austen (1775-1817) can be said to be the most widely studied author in the history of English literature. But unlike Shakespeare, her language has received little scholarly attention. This is especially true for the language of her letters. Jane Austen's letters, mostly addressed to her sister Cassandra but to various other people as well, have been described as the equivalent of telephone conversations, and if you read them, you can almost hear her speak. We do not have access to actual speech from the time in which she lived, but the letters take us as close to the spoken language of the period as you might hope to get. They are therefore a veritable linguistic goldmine.

This study, for the first time, offers a detailed sociolinguistic account of all aspects of the language of her letters: spelling, vocabulary and grammar. It also produces some evidence of pronunciation as well as of local dialectal usage. The analysis shows Jane Austen to be rather idiosyncratic in her language use: she was consistent in her spelling (though she had unusual spelling preferences), not very innovative in her vocabulary (though she did coin a few new words), and not quite representative of grammatical developments of the times (though her usage differed depending on who she wrote to, her sister, her publisher or her nieces and nephews).

This study of Jane Austen's private language use shows the extent to which she varied in her language use, just like any of us do today, while is also provides evidence both for a date of her unfinished novel The Watsons (for the first time on linguistic grounds) and for the interplay there must have been between the editors of her novels and her own linguistic preferences, in the field of spelling and otherwise.

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

Written In: English (eng)

See this book announcement on our website:
http://linguistlist.org/pubs/books/get-book.cfm?BookID=69856


---------------------------------- Publishing Partner ----------------------------------
Cambridge University Press http://us.cambridge.org

----------------------------- Major Supporting Publishers -----------------------------
Akademie Verlag GmbH http://www.oldenbourg-verlag.de/akademie-verlag
Bloomsbury Linguistics (formerly Continuum Linguistics) http://www.bloomsbury.com
Brill http://www.brill.nl
Cambridge Scholars Publishing http://www.c-s-p.org
Cascadilla Press http://www.cascadilla.com/
Classiques Garnier http://www.classiques-garnier.com/
De Gruyter Mouton http://www.degruyter.com/
Edinburgh University Press http://www.euppublishing.com
Elsevier Ltd http://www.elsevier.com/
Equinox Publishing Ltd http://www.equinoxpub.com/
European Language Resources Association (ELRA) http://www.elra.info/
Georgetown University Press http://www.press.georgetown.edu/
John Benjamins http://www.benjamins.com/
Lincom GmbH http://www.lincom-shop.eu/
MIT Press http://mitpress.mit.edu/
Multilingual Matters http://www.multilingual-matters.com/
Narr Francke Attempto Verlag GmbH + Co. KG http://www.narr.de/
Oxford University Press http://www.oup.com/us
Palgrave Macmillan http://www.palgrave.com/
Peter Lang AG http://www.peterlang.com/
Rodopi http://www.rodopi.nl/
Routledge (Taylor and Francis) http://www.routledge.com/
Springer http://www.springer.com/
University of Toronto Press http://www.utpjournals.com/
Wiley-Blackwell http://www.wiley.com/

--------------------------- Other Supporting Publishers ---------------------------
Association of Editors of the Journal of Portuguese Linguistics http://www.fl.ul.pt/revistas/JPL/JPLweb.htm
International Pragmatics Assoc. http://ipra.ua.ac.be/
Linguistic Association of Finland http://www.ling.helsinki.fi/sky/
Morgan & Claypool Publishers http://www.morganclaypool.com/
Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke (LOT) http://www.lotpublications.nl/
Seoul National University http://j-cs.org/index/index.php
SIL International Publications http://www.sil.org/resources/publications
Universitat Jaume I http://www.uji.es/CA/publ/
University of Nebraska Press http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/
Utrecht institute of Linguistics http://www-uilots.let.uu.nl/

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