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 Ling 131: Language & Style

 Topic 6 (session A) - Style and Style variation > Session Overview

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Session Overview
Style Variation in USA
Language Variation: Dialect
Language Variation: Register
Style Variation in a poem
Style: What is it?
Authorial and text style
Style Variation Checksheet
Topic 6 'tool' summary
Useful Links

What will we learn in this topic?


In this topic we will begin to learn about style and style variation. Because it is easiest to 'see' a style when it contrasts with other styles, Session A will concentrate on variations in style within particular texts and the meanings and effects which style variation can produce. Then, in Session B, we will look at authorial styles, and how they are created linguistically, in more detail.

This topic also forms the 'bridge' between the stylistic analysis of poetry, which we have concentrated on so far, and the stylistic analysis of prose. In Session A we will look at examples from poetry and prose. In session B we will concentrate almost entirely on prose, which will then become the main focus for the next few Topics of the course.

Session A

We will explore two main aspects of language variation, dialect and register. Dialects are semi-permanent language varieties associated with particular groups of people. Registers are variations in our language that are much more rapid. Compare the way we speak when chatting to close friends with how we speak when talking to someone we think of as important and/or are in awe of. We may use a number of language registers in one day, or even one hour of one day.

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