Sociolinguistic Perspectives on Register

Sociolinguistic Perspectives on Register

Hardback Oxford Studies in Sociolinguistics

Edited by Douglas Biber, Edited by Edward Finegan


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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
  • Format: Hardback | 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 163mm x 236mm x 31mm | 881g
  • Publication date: 13 January 1994
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0195083644
  • ISBN 13: 9780195083644
  • Illustrations note: line figures, tables

Product description

The guiding idea of this collection is to bring together a number of different perspectives on variation in language according to occasion of use. At present this is a rather ill-defined field of interest sometimes referred to as style variation and sometimes as register variation. This area has not figured as prominently in sociolinguistics as certain and other aspects of variation (social dialect variation in particular). This volume draws attention to the importance of this ubiquitous linguistic phenomenon and points the way to a unified approach. Biber and Finegan have solicited studies presenting a variety of perspectives on registers and register variation, as well as papers that attempt to integrate register and social dialect variation into a coherent theoretical framework.

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Review quote

"[A] significant collection....The book has succeeded admirably....An invaluable resource for those concerned with the socially situated side of language, whether it concerns dialect variation, interlanguage, or any other type of variation within language. This collection is a significant and useful contribution to sociolinguisics that is worthy of a must read' designation."--Studies in Second Language Acquisition"Biber's studies raise a major methodological issue which has considerable ramifications for the view we take of language....A well-presented book."--Language in Society

Back cover copy

This collection brings together several perspectives on language varieties defined according to their contexts of use - what are variously called registers, sublanguages, or genres. Highlighting the importance of register variation, the volume includes empirical analyses and linguistic descriptions, as well as explanations for existing patterns of variation and proposals for theoretical frameworks. The authors treat languages in obsolescence and in their youth; examine registers in languages from around the globe; and, adopting both synchronic and diachronic perspectives, studies of registers and register variation published to date.