The primary relevance of subconsciously offered attitudes

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The chapter deals with the role of language-ideological structures in linguistic variation and change at the macro-level of societal life. It argues that we need to construe (conceptualize and operationalize) data collection contexts which allow for a clear distinction between consciously (overtly) and subconsciously (covertly) offered attitudes – because subconsciously offered attitudes appear to be a driving force in linguistic variation and change in a way that consciously offered attitudes are not. The argument is based on evidence from empirical investigations of attitudes and use in the ‘standard vs. non-standard’ dimension in Denmark, and in the ‘national vs. English’ dimension in seven Nordic communities (including the Icelandic, Faroese, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Finland-Swedish, and Finnish communities).


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