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Prologue: Social Correlates of Linguistic Structures
1: Sociolinguistic Typology and the Speed of Change
2: Complexification, Simplification, and Two Types of Contact
3: Isolation and Complexification
4: Mechanisms of Complexification
5: Contact and Isolation in Phonology
6: Mature Phenomena and Societies of Intimates
Epilogue: On the Future of Linguistic Complexity
Peter Trudgill is Professor of Sociolinguistics at the University
of Agder, Norway. He has held Chairs in Linguistics at the
Universities of Reading, Essex, Lausanne, and Fribourg (where he is
now Emeritus). He is also an Adjunct Professor at the Research
Centre for Linguistic Typology at La Trobe University and Honorary
Professor of Sociolinguistics at the University of East Anglia. His
many books include Sociolinguistics: an Introduction to Language
Society (Penguin, 1974, 4th edn 2000), On Dialect (Blackwell, 1983), Dialects in Contact (Blackwell, 1986), The Dialects of England (Blackwell 1990, 2nd end 1999), New-Dialect Formation: on the Inevitability of
Colonial Englishes (Edinburgh, 2004), and Investigations in Sociohistorical Linguistics: Stories of Colonisation and Contact (CUP 2010).
this thought-provoking work ... offers a fresh and compelling
reason for linguists to focus on less commonly studied endangered
languages. We therefore recommend this stimulating book to anyone
interested in exploring possible connections between
sociolinguistcs, language change, and typology.
*James N. Stanford and Timothy J. Pulju, Studies in Language*
An exciting book, multi-faceted and lucid, a book that can not only be recommended to researchers on linguistic change and historical sociolinguistics but also to advanced students in the field.
*Juerg Schwyter, Neuphilologische Mitteilunge*
a brisk and informative introduction to a way of thinking about language that has profound implications for analysis of language diachrony, acquisition, contact, and spread - and of course, given those areas, creolization.
*Brian McWhorter, Revista de Crioulos de Base Lexical Portuguesa e Espanhola*
This bold new book, by one of the fields leading sociolinguists, outlines the need for a new intellectual project at the heart of our discipline, emphasising the crucial role of the small face-to-face societies that have shaped most of human history in generating the outer reaches of linguistic complexity.
*Nicholas Evans, Professor of Linguistics, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University*
This focussed and important work shows that degree of contact, the size of the community of speakers, and coherence within that community are all important factors in the degree to which languages become structurally simpler (losing agreement and gender for example) or more complex. This is a must-read for anyone interested in language change.
*Gary Miller, author of Language Change and Linguistic Theory*