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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

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This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.


Academic Paper


Title: The sociolinguistic functions of codeswitching between Standard Arabic and Dialectal Arabic
Author: Abdulkafi Albirini
Institution: Utah State University
Linguistic Field: Discourse Analysis; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Arabic, Standard
Abstract: This study examines the social functions of codeswitching (CS) between Standard Arabic (SA) and Dialectal Arabic (DA). The data came from thirty-five audio and video recordings in the domains of religious lectures, political debates, and soccer commentaries. The findings suggest that speakers create a functional division between the two varieties by designating issues of importance, complexity, and seriousness to SA, the High code, and aligning less important, less serious, and accessible topics with DA, the Low code. The CS patterns therefore reproduce the unequal social and distribution of SA and DA in the Arabic sociolinguistic landscape and simultaneously call for a reconceptualization of the notion of diglossia as presented in Ferguson's (1959) work. Other functions of CS as a marker of speakers' attitudes and as an index of pan-Arab or Muslim identities are discussed. (Arabic, bidialectal codeswitching, High/Low dichotomy, functional diglossia, identity, language attitudes)

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Language in Society Vol. 40, Issue 5, which you can read on Cambridge's site .



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