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The Pluricentricity Debate

On Austrian German and other Germanic Standard Varieties

Stefan Dollinger



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03 June 2019
Language: history & general works; Dialect, slang & jargon
This book unpacks a 30-year debate about the pluricentricity of German. It examines the concept of pluricentricity, an idea implicit to the study of World Englishes, which expressly allows for national standard varieties, and the notion of pluri-areality, which seeks to challenge the former. Looking at the debate from three angles - methodological, theoretical, and epistemological - the volume draws on data from German and English, with additional perspectives from Dutch, Luxembourgish, Swedish, Danish and Norwegian, to establish if and to what degree pluri-areality and pluricentricity model various sociolinguistic situations adequately. Dollinger argues that pluri-areality is synonymous with geographical variation and, as such, no match for pluricentricity. Instead, pluri-areality presupposes an atheoretical, supposedly neutral , data-driven linguistics that violates basic science-theoretical principles. Three fail-safes are suggested - the uniformitarian hypothesis, Popper's theory of falsification and speaker attitudes - to avoid philological incompatibilities and terminological clutter. This book is of particular interest to scholars in sociolinguistics, World Englishes, Germanic languages and linguists more generally.
By:   Stefan Dollinger
Imprint:   Routledge
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 140mm, 
Weight:   318g
ISBN:   9780367143572
ISBN 10:   0367143577
Series:   Routledge Focus on Linguistics
Pages:   138
Publication Date:   03 June 2019
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Primary ,  A / AS level
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Table of Contents List of tables List of illustrations Preface Acknowledgements Terminological Note 1 The problem 1.1 What is pluricentricity? 1.2 What is pluri-areality? 1.3 Pluricentricity in the world 1.4 Pluricentricity in the Germanic languages 1.5 An outline of the book 2 Standardizing German: concepts and background 2.1 Contiguous borders vs. sea borders 2.2 What's in a name? 2.3 The standardization of written German 2.4 Abstand, ausbau language and roofing 3 The international pluricentric model 3.1 English 3.2 Northern Germanic 3.3 Belgian Dutch (Flemish) and Dutch Dutch 3.4 Luxembourgish 4 The German pluri-areal model 4.1 Dialectological context 4.2 Pluricentric and monocentric models of German 4.3 The Upper Austrian - Bavarian border 4.4 A pluricentrist turned pluri-arealist 5 The case against pluricentricity 5.1 Pluricentricity and the OEsterreichisches Woerterbuch (OEWB) 5.2 The charge of ideology vs. enregistering ideology 5.3 The pluri-arealist bias 5.4 Reinterpreting Auer (2005) 5.5 Pluricentricity: outdated in a borderless Europe vs. homo nationalis? 6 The case against pluri-areality 6.1 Demystifying pluri-areality = geographical variation 6.2 A-theoretical empiricism 6.3 The Axiom of Categoricity 6.4 Type vs. tokens and social salience 6.5 Formulae in a black box 7 The lynchpin: speaker attitudes 7.1 State Nation Austria vs. Nation State Germany 7.2 Linguistic insecurity 7.3 German mother-tongue language instruction 7.4 Language planning and pedagogy 8 Examples: trends, not categoricity 8.1 An undetected Austrianism: Anpatzen 'make disreputable' 8.2 An unlikely Austrianism: der Tormann 'goal tender' 8.3 An even unlikelier Austrianism: hudeln 8.4 An enregistered Austrianism: es geht sich (nicht) aus 8.5 A typology of Austrianisms 9 Safeguards in the Modelling of Standard Varieties 9.1 The Uniformitarian Principle: vertical and horizontal 9.2 Explicit and falsifiable theories 9.3 The speaker is always right : pedagogical implications 9.4 The language political angle of pluri-areality 9.5 Considering political borders 10 Bibliography General Index

Stefan Dollinger is Associate Professor at UBC Vancouver, specializing in historical linguistics, sociolinguistics and linguistic border studies. He is the author of New-Dialect Formation in Canada (2008) and The Written Questionnaire in Social Dialectology (2015), and Chief Editor of the Dictionary of Canadianisms on Historical Principles - (2017).

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