This paper will discuss how language in general acquires meaning and how the function of language goes beyond simple communication about objects in the world when speakers engage with each other in spoken discourse. I argue that (spoken) language carries an additional social encoding which tells the interlocutor about the speakers’ social background. My study is focused on a study of Tyneside English. More specifically, I have studied changes over time in the morphosyntax of this variety and am currently in the process of investigating Tyneside speakers’ awareness of these specific forms and what the Tyneside (or Geordie) variety means to them. The working hypothesis of my current study is that as the urban landscape of Newcastle is changing speakers are increasingly looking for other ways to anchor their identity and signify local identity. One of the tools for doing so is through the use of local language forms (which for some forms is on the increase). I argue that both social and cognitive factors play a part in allowing language to function in this way and that an approach to studying language variation and change and “language in the mind” more generally benefits from being informed by theories and insights from sociocognitive psychology.
|Publication status||Published - 6 Sep 2012|
|Event||School of Arts and Social Sciences Postgraduate Research Conference - Northumbria University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne|
Duration: 6 Sep 2012 → …
|Conference||School of Arts and Social Sciences Postgraduate Research Conference|
|Period||6/09/12 → …|