Qualitative Methods in Sociolinguistics

Qualitative Methods in Sociolinguistics

Qualitative Methods in Sociolinguistics

Qualitative Methods in Sociolinguistics

Synopsis

Qualitative Methods in Sociolinguistics is the only book on qualitative research methods designed especially for readers doing research on language and society. It provides a brief, accessible introduction to general theoretical and practical questions about research and also covers the principal means of selecting, collecting, and analyzing data for interpretive sociolinguistic work. Topics discussed include the historical context of contemporary sociolinguistic methodology, the development of research questions, standards of evidence, research ethics, ethnography, discourse analysis, and strategies for writing articles and essays. In each chapter the author considers both field methods and analytical methods, illustrating the approaches by describing studies that have employed them. Exercises, ideas for discussion, and suggestions for further reading enhance the text and provide starting points for student research projects. Clearly written and comprehensible to students at all levels, this unique work is an ideal supplementary text for courses in sociolinguistics, language and culture, and field methods. It is also a helpful reference for anyone contemplating sociolinguistic research on any level.

Excerpt

This book is meant for people who want to do sociolinguistic research, be they undergraduates or graduate students taking a course in sociolinguistics, dissertation writers, professors changing subfields, or people who are just curious about the field. It is an overview of qualitative research techniques, not an overview of the field as a whole. In an introductory course about sociolinguistics, this book could complement materials about sociolinguistic theory and research findings. It could also be the text, or one of the texts, for a field methods course for students who have already been introduced to sociolinguistics. Because relatively few working sociolinguists were explicitly trained in research methodology, and because more sociolinguistics students have backgrounds in the humanities than in the sciences, the book begins with basic questions such as these: What does [empirical] mean? Is sociolinguistics a science? Is there a role for hypothesis-testing in interpretive, humanistic scholarship? What standards of evidence can we agree on?

Chapter 1 introduces the book's major themes. To contextualize what sociolinguists do, Chapter 2 sketches the field methods and/or analytical methods of three branches of linguistics that have in one way or another been precursors to contemporary sociolinguistics: dialect geography, which provides an interesting example of the interplay between preplanned rigor and spontaneous creativity in fieldwork; descriptive linguistics, which involves both well-articulated field methods such as elicitation techniques and well-articulated [discovery procedures] for the analysis of the collected corpus; and historical/comparative linguistics, in which field research (epigraphy, decipherment, textual criticism) is typically left to others and . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.