The anthropology of language an introduction to linguistic anthropology pdf

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Linguistic anthropology is the interdisciplinary study of how language influences social life. It is a branch of anthropology that originated from the endeavor to document endangered languages, and has grown the anthropology of language an introduction to linguistic anthropology pdf the past century to encompass most aspects of language structure and use.


Linguistic anthropology explores how language shapes communication, forms social identity and group membership, organizes large-scale cultural beliefs and ideologies, and develops a common cultural representation of natural and social worlds. Though they developed sequentially, all three paradigms are still practised today. The first paradigm was originally called linguistics, but as it and its surrounding fields of study matured, it came to be called anthropological linguistics.

Whorf Hypothesis is perhaps a misnomer insofar as the approach to science taken by these two differs from the positivist, hypothesis-driven model of science. Humboldt’s philosophy holds an important place in recent work produced in Germany, France, and elsewhere in Europe. It would involve taking advantage of new developments in technology, including new forms of mechanical recording.

A new unit of analysis was also introduced by Hymes. The speech event is an event defined by the speech occurring in it, like a lecture, so a dinner is not a speech event, but a speech situation, a situation in which speech may or may not occur. Much attention was devoted to speech events in which performers were held accountable for the form of their linguistic performance as such.

Hymes also pioneered a linguistic anthropological approach to ethnopoetics. Hymes had hoped to link linguistic anthropology more closely with the mother discipline. In the third paradigm, which has emerged since the late 1980s, instead of continuing to pursue agendas that come from a discipline alien to anthropology, linguistic anthropologists have systematically addressed themselves to problems posed by the larger discipline of anthropology but by using linguistic data and methods.

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