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New from Oxford University Press!


It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Book Information


Title: Socio-Historical Linguistics
Subtitle: Its Status and Methodology
Written By: Suzanne Romaine
Series Title: Cambridge Studies in Linguistics 34

Synchronic sociolinguistics has been particularly convincing in its use of
quantitative models to demonstrates how ‘the present might explain the
past’. However, the relevance of sociolinguistics to historical linguistics
‘using the past to explain the present’, has been largely ignored. In this
volume Dr. Romaine lays the foundation for a field of research encompassing
both historical linguistics and sociolinguistics, which aims to investigate
and account for language variation within a particular speech community
over time. The socio-historical approach is illustrated here by a detailed
analysis of the development of relative clause formation strategies in
Middle Scots. This case study raises fundamental questions about the
epistemological status of sociolinguistic theory and in particular its
claims to an empirical foundation. Her own preliminary suggestions for a
truly integrative sociolinguistic theory will be of interest to
sociolinguists, historical linguists and general linguists.

Publication Year: 2009
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics
Linguistic Theories
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Format: Paperback
ISBN: 0521112338
ISBN-13: 9780521112338
Prices: U.S. $ 39.99
U.K. £ 24.99