1st Edition

Standard English The Widening Debate

By Tony Bex, Richard J. Watts Copyright 1999
    328 Pages
    by Routledge

    324 Pages
    by Routledge

    Standard English draws together the leading international scholars in the field, who confront the debates surrounding 'Standard English', grammar and correctness head-on.
    These debates are as intense today as ever and extend far beyond an academic context. Current debates about the teaching of English in the school curriculum and concerns about declining standards of English are placed in a historical, social and international context. Standard English:
    * explores the definitions of 'Standard English', with particular attention to distinctions between spoken and written English
    * traces the idea of 'Standard English' from its roots in the late seventeenth century through to the present day.
    This is an accessible, seminal work which clarifies an increasingly confused topic. It includes contributions from: Ronald Carter, Jenny Cheshire, Tony Crowley, James Milroy, Lesley Milroy and Peter Trudgill.

    Introduction PART I Perspectives on the history and ideology of ‘Standard English’ Introduction to Part I 1The consequences of standardisation in descriptive Linguistics 2 The social construction of Standard English: Grammar writers as a ‘discourse community’ 3 Typography, lexicography and the development of the idea of ‘standard English’4 Representations of English in twentieth-century Britain: Fowler, Gowers and Partridge PART II Perspectives on the spoken language Introduction to Part II 5 Standard English: What it isn’t 6 Spoken standard English 7 Standard grammars, spoken grammars: Some educational Implications PART III Perspectives from outside the UK Introduction to Part III 18 Standard English and language ideology in Britain and the United States 9 The names of US English: Valley girl, cowboy, yankee, normal, nasal and ignorant 10 Functions and forms of English in a European EFL Country EPILOGUE 11 Curiouser and curiouser: Falling standards in the standard English debate


    Tony Bex is at the University of Kent. His previous publications includes Variety of Written English (1996). Richard J. Watts is at the University of Bern.

    'Lively, vastly informative, scholarly - this is a notably accessible, seminal overview of a complex and as yet unresolved linguistic and educational puzzle.' - The Library Association Record

    'It highlights the problem in ascertainig exactly what constitutes SE (Standard English)' - Frances Austin, English Studies, Vol.82, Feb 2001