Sociolinguistics and Social Theory: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Sociolinguistics and Social Theory

1st Edition

By Nikolas Coupland, Srikant Sarangi, Christopher N. Candlin


416 pages

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Paperback: 9780582327832
pub: 2001-05-25
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The empirical and descriptive strengths of sociolinguistics, developed over more than 40 years of research, have not been matched by an active engagement with theory. Yet, over this time, social theorising has taken important new turns, linked in many ways to linguistic and discursive concerns. Sociolinguistics and Social Theory is the first book to explore the interface between sociolinguistic analysis and modern social theory. The book sets out to reunite sociolinguistics with the concepts and perspectives of several of the most influential modern theorists of society and social action, including Bakhtin, Foucault, Habermas, Sacks, Goffman, Bourdieu and Giddens. In eleven newly commissioned chapters, leading sociolinguists reappraise the theoretical framing of their research, reaching out beyond conventional limits. The authors propose significant new orientations to key sociolinguistic themes, including-

- social motivations for language variation and change

- language, power and authority

- language and ageing

- language, race and class

- language planning

In substantial introductory and concluding chapters, the editors and invited discussants reassess the boundaries of sociolinguistic theory and the priorities of sociolinguistic methods. Sociolinguistics and Social Theory encourages students and researchers of sociolinguistics to be more reflexively aware and critical of the social bases of their analyses and invites a reasessment of the place sociolinguistics occupies in the social sciences generally.

About the Authors

Nikolas Coupland is Professor and Director of the Centre for Language and Communication Research, Cardiff University.

Srikant Sarangi is Reader in Language and Communication at the Centre for Language and Communication Research, Cardiff University, and Christopher N. Candlin is Chair Professor of Applied Linguistics and Director of the Centre for English Language Education and Communication Research, City University of Hong Kong.

About the Series

Language In Social Life

Language in Social Life is a major new series which highlights the importance of language to an understanding of issues of social and professional concern. It will be of practical relevance to all those wanting to understand how the ways we communicate both influence and are influenced by the structures and forces of contemporary social institutions.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / Sociolinguistics