Sociolinguistics and Corpus Linguistics

By Paul Baker | Go to book overview

Chapter 1
Introduction

Over the past twenty or so years, an approach to the study of language referred to as corpus linguistics has largely become accepted as an important and useful mode of linguistic inquiry. While corpora (or large collections of computerised texts, usually carefully sampled in order to be representative of a particular language variety) were first mainly used as aids to lexicography and pedagogy, they have more recently been deployed for a wider range of purposes. To illustrate, a sample of recent publications in linguistics includes Words and Phrases: Corpus Studies of Lexical Semantics (Stubbs 2001), Corpora in Applied Linguistics (Hunston 2002), Corpus Stylistics (Semino and Short 2004), Introducing Corpora in Translation Studies (Olohan 2004), Using Corpora in Discourse Analysis (Baker 2006), Corpora in Cognitive Linguistics: CorpusBased Approaches to Syntax and Lexis (Gries 2006), Corpus-Based Approaches to Metaphor and Metonymy (Stefanowitsch and Gries 2006) and Corpus Linguistics Beyond the Word: Corpus Research from Phrase to Discourse (Fitzpatrick 2007). What readers might note from this list is the absence of a book to date which details a corpus-based approach to sociolinguistics. Such a pairing has not been completely ignored. In their early overview of the field, McEnery and Wilson (1996) have a short section on corpora and sociolinguistics, which mainly discusses what is possible, rather than what has been done (at that point there was little to report), while Hunston (2002: 159–61) discusses how corpora can be used in order to describe sociolinguistic, diachronic and register variation. Additionally, Beeching (2006) has a short chapter on the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of sociolinguistic corpora in an edited collection by Wilson et al. These sections of books point to the fact that some form of ‘corpus sociolinguistics’ is possible, although it might appear that corpus linguistics has made only a relatively small impact on sociolinguistics.

The main question that this book seeks to answer is: how can corpus linguistics methods be used gainfully in order to aid sociolinguistic research? This book is therefore written for the sociolinguist who would like to know more about corpus techniques, and for the corpus linguist who wants to investigate sociolinguistic problems. Occurring somewhere between these two imaginary researchers are readers who may have little experience of either corpora or sociolinguistics, or readers who may know quite a bit about both. The challenge when writing a book that combines two fields is to try to keep a potentially diverse audience interested without making too many

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Sociolinguistics and Corpus Linguistics
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 190

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.