Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing

By Melissa Mohr

Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing "contains original research into the history of swearing, and is scrupulous in analyzing the claims of other scholars."


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

A New Manual of French Composition

By R. L. Graeme Ritchie

A New Manual of French Composition "provides a guide to French composition aimed at university students and the higher classes in schools. "


The LINGUIST List is dedicated to providing information on language and language analysis, and to providing the discipline of linguistics with the infrastructure necessary to function in the digital world. LINGUIST is a free resource, run by linguistics students and faculty, and supported primarily by your donations. Please support LINGUIST List during the 2016 Fund Drive.

Academic Paper


Title: Gender, prescriptivism, and language change: Morphological variation in Hebrew animate reference
Author: Erez Levon
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://homepages.nyu.edu/~eml246
Institution: Queen Mary, University of London
Linguistic Field: Morphology; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Hebrew
Abstract: Beliefs about a language rarely correspond to how it is used. This is especially true for Hebrew, a language that has been subject to continued ideological “preservation” efforts ever since its (re)vernacularization in the early 20th century. Recently, attention has turned to the maintenance of Hebrew gender morphology, which is perceived in both scholarly and popular opinion as threatened by a process of leveling to gender syncretized forms across a range of word classes and inflectional paradigms. In this article, I investigate the extent to which sociolinguistic evidence supports this perception in cases of animate reference. I argue that while the claim of widespread gender neutralization of these forms is descriptively valid, its characterization as a change-in-progress is inaccurate. Rather, I suggest that Hebrew is already fully syncretized for gender in certain relevant morphological contexts and that the perception of an ongoing process of change reflects a prescriptive belief about how Hebrew should be, not how it actually is.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Language Variation and Change Vol. 24, Issue 1, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



Add a new paper
Return to Academic Papers main page
Return to Directory of Linguists main page