The standard in South African English and its social history by Len W. Lanham, C.A. MacDonald

By Len W. Lanham, C.A. MacDonald

This examine of the South African number of English is an workout within the sociology of language carried out regularly in the conceptual framework and method created by way of William Labov. It accepts that social method and social constitution are mirrored in styles of covariation related to linguistic and social variables, and in attitudes to diverse kinds of speech in the group. This premise is pursued Read more...

content material: the normal in South African English and its Social background; PREFACE; CONTENTS; ABBREVIATIONS; advent AND historical past: THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE IN SOUTH AFRICA; I. FIRST OBSERVATIONS at the commonplace; II. THE SPEECH neighborhood; III. THE LINGUISTIC VARIABLE; DATA-GATHERING thoughts; IV. LECTAL kinds IN SAE; V. homes OF a regular VARIABLE; VI. FORMAL AND casual criteria; VII. THE SOCIAL background OF THE SAE neighborhood; VIII. THE PROVINCIAL (INFORMAL) typical IN SAE; IX. THE SOCIAL value OF THE PROVINCIAL regular; X. POSTSCRIPT: A comparability WITH AUSTRALIA; References.
summary: This research of the South African number of English is an workout within the sociology of language performed usually in the conceptual framework and method created through William Labov. It accepts that social method and social constitution are mirrored in styles of covariation related to linguistic and social variables, and in attitudes to diverse different types of speech in the group. This premise is pursued the following in its ancient implications: linguistuic facts in present-day speech styles of previous states of the society and of the social, political and cultural alterations that experience

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Sample text

The SAE community is insensitive to the Ext SAE Afr E distinction (see Macdonald's findings below) and the admixture has no particular significance therefore. In November, 1976, the SABC withdrew singer Andy Dillon's Drive-In Song because 'they didn't like the accent'. 'The accent in question is heavily South African' (Mr Dillon's comment), again in association with the stereotype of which the SAE community is so fully aware. In both these cases the government body concerned took such positive action because they believed the caricature would give offence to the public.

The only social meaning these audiences could offer (always by a small minority in the total audience) is a regional association with Natal. With the exception of certain older and old-aged subjects in Natal, mainly female, NE variables gain in prominence in speech as it becomes more formal. The advance of these vari­ ables in the SAE community generally is indicated in table 7 above; the spectacular advance of Fronted ai in the speech of Witwatersrand females is revealed in table 9 below. For some years we have observed high quantities and very high index values for Fronted ai in the speech of young female undergraduates; the Eastern European descent group is the most prominent in this respect.

Macdonald, 1977, inquired into the effects of teachers' perception of an accent on their expectations as to pupil per­ formance. From her subjects' responses to a questionnaire, she reports that 79% of the young-adult teacher trainees (the majority judged as being lower-middle-class in status) admitted to attempts to change their own speech and nearly half of the total sample directed such efforts at their accent. 12. The social evaluation of CE variables is unequivocal, re­ vealing the common social mind of white SA society in this regard.

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