Language and Social Identity

by Richard K. Blot, ed.


Explores the relationship between language and the culture of group identity.

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December 2003


Pages 320
Volumes 1
Size 6x9
Topics Psychology/General
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Whenever we open our mouths to speak, we provide those who hear us, chosen interlocuters or mere bystanders, with a wealth of data, linguistic clues others use to position us within a specific social strata. Our particular uses of language mark us geographically, ethnically, by age or sex, and, especially in stratified societies, according to class or caste. This collection of papers by researchers in cultural and linguistic anthropology examine these concepts as well as many others.

Linguists, anthropologists, and others concerned with the formal study of the social uses and functions of language are concerned with documenting the implications of such judging on the lives of various peoples around the world and among the classes within their own societies. What linguistic features of speech are used to form stereotypical impressions about the social identity (as well as the character) of others? How are linguistic features linked to ethnicity, to gender, to race, and to class? This collection of papers by researchers in cultural and linguistic anthropology examine these concepts as well as many others.

Topic Centers

Foreword by Charles Briggs
Editor's Introduction by Richard K. Blot
Language and Indians' Place in Chiapas, Mexico: A Testimony from the Tzotzil Maya by Gary H. Gossen
The Deficits of History: Terms of Violence in an Arapaco Myth Complex from the Brazilian Northwest Amazon by Janet M. Chernela and Eric Leed
Giving Violence to the Hill Spirit: Mayan Visionary Testimony in Southern Belize by Jerry Kelly
"We Don't Speak Catalan Because We Are Marginalized": Ethnic and Class Connotations of Language in Barcelona by Kathryn Woolard
The Politics of Representation: Class and Ethnic Identities in Cochabamba, Bolivia by Maria Lagos
The Narrative Construction of E'Napa Ethnicity by Maria Eugenia Villalon
Ebonics, Language and Power by Mike Long
Containing Language Difference: Advertising in Hispanic Magazine by Bonnie Urcuioli
The Other Tongue, the Other Voice: Language and Gender in the French Caribbean by Ellen Schnepel
Reclaiming Traditions, Remaking Community: Politics, Language, and Place among the Tolowa of Northwest California by James Collins
"Word-Sound-Power": Language, Social Identity, and the Worldview of Rastafari by John W. Pulis
Passionate Speech and Literate Talk in Grenada by George Mentore
Notes on Contributors

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