This book contextualises case studies across a wide variety of languages and cultures, crystallising key interrelationships between linguistic standardisation and prescriptivism, and between ideas and practices. It focuses on different traditions of standardisation and prescription throughout the world and addresses questions such as how nationalistic idealisations of ‘traditional’ language persist (or shift) amid language change, linguistic variation and multilingualism. The volume explores issues of standardisation and the sociolinguistic phenomenon of prescription as a formative influence on the notional standard language as well as the interconnections between these in a wide range of geographical contexts. It balances the otherwise strong emphasis on English in English language publications on prescriptivism and breaks new ground with its multilingual approach across languages and nations. The book will appeal to scholars working within different linguistic traditions interested in questions relating to all aspects of standardisation and prescriptivism.
Long ignored by professional linguists, or dismissed as ‘unnatural’ or ‘artificial’, prescriptivism in language is in this volume the object of serious scientific investigation. This collection explores the vast range of sociolinguistic contexts for prescriptivism, and firmly demonstrates the important place for this research in general linguistics.
- Douglas A. Kibbee, University of Illinois, USA
This volume shows how much we gain in our understanding of standardization and standard languages by looking at a wide range of languages over time, in monolingual and, importantly, multilingual cultures. No matter what language you study, papers here will challenge your thinking about theory and methods and how prescription works in today’s world.
- Anne Curzan, University of Michigan, USA
Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade is Professor and Chair of English Sociohistorical Linguistics at the University of Leiden, The Netherlands. Her research focuses on sociohistorical linguistics, standardisation and prescriptivism, Late Modern English, 18th and 19th-century letter writing, and Jane Austen’s language.
Carol Percy is Professor of English at the University of Toronto, Canada. Her main research interests are Late Modern English, standardisation and prescriptivism, history of education, women’s studies, and children’s literature.