Presentation on theme: "Variation at the BL Dick Hudson British Library November 13 2007."— Presentation transcript:
Variation at the BL Dick Hudson British Library November 13 2007
Context: English The Garden of Eden –Just two kinds of English: –Right (Write) and Wrong. Since The Fall into Linguistics –Everyone is right –But everyone shows their: Region Age Gender Race Education, etc.
Context: schools Variation is part of the curriculum “Language variation Pupils should be taught about how language varies: According to context and purpose Between standard and dialect forms Between spoken and written forms” –(National Curriculum for English, Key Stage 2, speaking and listening)
Context: HE research Dialect surveys –Survey of English Dialects 1948-61 Sociolinguistics –Trudgill, Cheshire, Milroy, …. What a lot of variation there is! How to cope?
Coping with variation: invent regions Trudgill, The Dialects of England
Coping: enjoy the detail Make raw information freely available –Via the Internet –Not possible in any other country? Let people study themselves and their locality –Via focussed questionnaires But provide an overview for comparison
Context: research & schools Schools need information But schools can also provide information Viv Edwards & Jenny Cheshire, 1986-8 –Survey of British dialect grammar Children love it and learn from it HE researchers can help But collaboration needs a coordinator