Language Change Essay examples
GROUP 8 : 1. Danu Alfian Baihaqi 2. Dio wahyu 3. Dedeh Y 4. Firman Setiawan
Pamulang University 2015
Language change is a phenomenon studied both by historical linguists and sociolinguists.
Historical linguists study basically the change of languages over time (diachronic change) and examine how languages were used in the past and how they relate to one another . Eg. Old English Middle English Modern English
Sociolinguists study the origins or the causes of language changes and explain how society and changes in speech communities influence language and generate sociolects .
Eg. Spanish spoken by an upper class man/woman in Madrid
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Language acquisition by children is considered the main origin of language change because the child’s inner grammar may differ from the adult’s. Yet, it has been demonstrated that language change is not restricted to language acquisition, but may also occur with adult speakers
It is assumed that we can infer how a language will vary over time if we analize the linguistic behaviour of different age groups at a certain point in time. W. Labov. stated that two decisive parameters influence speakers´ linguistic behavior: their social class membership and the formality of the situation
Language is always changing: pronunciations evolve, new words are borrowed or invented, the meaning of old words drifts, and morphology develops or decays.
There are three major types of language change: lexical, grammatical and sound level.
Lexical level refers to changes in the meaning of words:
1- Loss Lexical Items – same phonemic structure but different meaning .
Eg.”Bank”; or phonetic attrition ”refrigerator” -”fridge”.
2- Change of meaning – semantic change due to historical or psychological factors .
3- Creation of new lexical items .
Eg. External from French words - “crown”, “power”.
Internal: “bird” as “girl” from “bride”.
Grammatical level refers