Intro to Sociolinguistics
In this course, we will explore the ways that language creates and reflects social identities. We will look at the contextual factors-social, cultural, geographical, political, etc.-that impact language use and variation. Themes for this course will include linguistic variation, language and identity, language policy, and language in the media. We will consider questions such as: What distinguishes a language from a dialect? How and why do some language varieties become privileged? How do notions of politeness and respect vary across linguistic contexts? In essence, we will learn how language shapes our world, and how we shape language itself.