14.1188, Qs: National Language Differentiation

LINGUIST List linguist at linguistlist.org
Sat Apr 26 13:36:55 UTC 2003

LINGUIST List:  Vol-14-1188. Sat Apr 26 2003. ISSN: 1068-4875.

Subject: 14.1188, Qs: National Language Differentiation

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Date:  Tue, 15 Apr 2003 09:23:41 -0700
From:  "Kathy Snow" <a-kathys at microsoft.com>
Subject:  National Language Differentiation

-------------------------------- Message 1 -------------------------------

Date:  Tue, 15 Apr 2003 09:23:41 -0700
From:  "Kathy Snow" <a-kathys at microsoft.com>
Subject:  National Language Differentiation

I have been researching the topic of national language differentiation
in connection with such phenomena as the development of Macedonian as
a legitimate (?) national language and the recent attempts to develop
a true international form of Spanish.  Can anyone point me to any
literature that deals with such questions.  I am particularly
interested in the European languages but would welcome examples from
other language families.
Historically, the need to distinguish "us" from "them" has obviously
been a factor in language differentiation.  This can take the form of
the political need to distinguish foreigners (and therefore enemies)
or a snobbish exclusion of the people who are not "in the group" that
talks a certain way.  In either case, prestige plays a large part,
whether national (or local) pride or fashionability.
Kathy Snow

LINGUIST List: Vol-14-1188

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