Orality in Written Texts Using Historical Corpora to Investigate Irish English 1700-1900
Shortlisted for the 2020 ESSE Book Award in English Language and Linguistics
Orality in Written Texts provides a methodologically and theoretically innovative study of change in Irish English in the period 1700-1900. Focusing in on a time during which Ireland became overwhelmingly English-speaking, the book traces the use of various linguistic features of Irish English in different historical contexts and over time. This book:
- draws on data from the Corpus of Irish English Correspondence (CORIECOR), which is composed of personal letters to and from Irish emigrants from the start of the eighteenth century up until the end of the twentieth century;
- analyses linguistic features that have hitherto remained neglected in the literature on Irish English, including discourse-pragmatic markers, and deictic and pronominal forms;
- discusses how the survival of the pragmatic mode has resulted in the preservation of certain facets of the Irish English variety as known today;
- explores sociolinguistic issues from a historical perspective.
With direct relevance to corpus-based literary studies as well as the exploration of hybrid, modern-day text forms, Orality in Written Texts is key reading for advanced students and researchers of corpus linguistics, varieties of English, language change and historical linguistics, as well as anyone interested in learning more about Irish history and migration.
List of Figures
List of Tables
List of abbreviations
Chapter 1. Introduction: opening windows into the past
Chapter 2. The historical context of the letters
Chapter 3. The orality of private correspondence. Using emigrant letters for linguistic analysis.
Chapter 4. Discourse-pragmatic variation
Chapter 5. Deictics
Chapter 6. Embedded questions
Chapter 7. Concluding remarks
"Although there is highly specialized knowledge undergirding the entirety of the volume, the writing is so clear and so beautifully presented that it will appeal to linguists of all stages, from the undergraduate to the specialist. It does not pander, but it also does not exclude. For this reason, the potential audience is vast. It holds something for almost anyone, from the discourse-analyst to the historical sociolinguist to the corpus linguist to the educator to the grammarian. This book is a rich and carefully crafted resource."
Alexandra D’Arcy1, University of Victoria, Canada
"An important contribution to research on Irish English in the diaspora, Orality in Written Texts demonstrates the importance of letters as evidence for the language of Irish migrants and the potential contribution of Irish English to other varieties of English across the world."
Joan C. Beal, University of Sheffield, UK
"This book successfully combines quantitative and qualitative analyses of corpus data in order to investigate the time-depth of widespread linguistic phenomena that have often drawn the attention of both scholarly and more general audiences, such as the Celtic influence on varieties of English and instances of colloquialization. A broad range of examples support well-argued case studies, thus enabling readers to access authentic sources and contributing to dispel myths of recency or stigmatized usage."
Marina Dossena, University of Bergamo, Italy