LINGUIST List 23.4881

Fri Nov 23 2012

Books: Explaining Register and Sociolinguistic Variation in the Lexicon: Corpus Studies on Dutch: Keune

Editor for this issue: Danniella Hornby <>

Date: 20-Nov-2012
From: Mariëtte Bonenkamp <>
Subject: Explaining Register and Sociolinguistic Variation in the Lexicon: Corpus Studies on Dutch: Keune
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Title: Explaining Register and Sociolinguistic Variation in the Lexicon:Corpus Studies on DutchSeries Title: LOT dissertation series

Publication Year: 2012Publisher: Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke - LOT

Author: Karen Keune

Paperback: ISBN: 9789460930904 Pages: Price: Europe EURO


This study combines the fields of sociolinguistics and corpus linguistics ininvestigating global lexical variation in two large corpora. It expands theknowledge on the role of register and sociolinguistic factors (country,gender, age, and education level) in shaping the way lexical characteristicsvary in both written and spoken Dutch. The study specifically targets lexicalproductivity and derivational morphology. In corpus linguistics the emphasis is on theeffects of register on global text characteristics. The emphasis invariationist studies in sociolinguistics is on the impact of social factors onspecific linguistic variables. The combination of these fields proves to besuccessful: Both language use and the language user emerge as importantsources of lexical variation. Concerning register, the highest derivationaland lexical productivity are found in the most formal registers of spoken andwritten Dutch. Concerning social factors, the most important finding ondifferences between the Netherlands and Flanders is that variation patternsare primarily word-bound, and can probably be traced back to divergent lexicalchoices in expressing specific concepts. A high derivational and lexicalproductivity, a high Type-Token Ratio, and a high proportion of nouns, allcharacteristics of a more `informational’ speech style, characterize men’sspeech. A high proportion of verbs and most common words, typical of a more`involved’ speech style, characterize women’s speech. Older highly educatedspeakers are most productive, mainly in situations that evoke the use of more`informational’ language, indicating that a speaker’s lexical knowledgeincreases during the lifetime.

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics Text/Corpus Linguistics

Subject Language(s): Dutch (nld)

Written In: English (eng)

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Page Updated: 23-Nov-2012