Re-examining vocalic variation in Scottish English: A Cognitive Grammar approach
The existing literature on vocalic variation in Scottish English has shown that variation tends to pattern according to the age, gender and socio-economic class of the speaker. However, studies which employ these gross social categories are unable to explain the variation that exists within these categories. This article therefore presents an alternative approach. Based on data from 16 adolescents who form a Community of Practice in west Fife, Scotland, this article attempts to consider both social and cognitive motivations for linguistic variation. The theoretical framework of Cognitive Grammar is particularly well suited to incorporating sociolinguistic variation and this article illustrates how an exploration of frequency effects and schematic organisation can lead to a more insightful understanding of the patterning of two vocalic variables in a community. The article also explores the implications of these findings for our understanding of the place of sociolinguistics in cognitive theories of linguistics.
SubjectsField of Research::20 - Language, Communication and Culture::2003 - Language Studies::200302 - English Language
- Arts: Journal Articles