1887
Restructuring Chinese Speech Communities
  • ISSN 0957-6851
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9838
USD
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes

Abstract

Much research has been done addressing the issue of language and dialect and has attracted much interest in the Sinophone world. In this paper, the issue is approached from the perspective of Speech Community Theory (SCT) with discussion of the identification of Chinese varieties. There are mainly two approaches in previous research: linguistic and sociolinguistic. In the linguistic approach, the classification of languages and dialects is through comparison of linguistic descriptions and intelligibility. In the sociolinguistic approach, actual language use and attitudes of the speakers are investigated and ethnic and political factors are considered. The two approaches tend to result in different classifications. The purely linguistic classification tends to be narrower than the classification invoking attitudinal, cultural and political factors, resulting in a larger number of languages than the sociolinguistic approach. The different approaches are traced to divergent understandings of what a language is. A language is often understood purely as a tool of communication or, alternatively, it is regarded primarily as an identity device. Applying SCT, we analyze the connection between communication and identity formation, taking the example of Cantonese speakers. That case shows a correlation of linguistic contact with linguistic identity among native speakers. Consequently, the relevance of cultural and socio-political factors is explained through their impact on communication rather than directly on a linguistic identity.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1075/japc.26.1.01xu
2016-06-09
2019-10-22
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

  1. Castells, Manuel
    (1997) The information age: Economy, society and culture, Vol. II: The power of identity. New York: Blackwell.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Chao, Y.R
    (1943) Languages and dialects in China. In Anwar S. Dil (Ed.), Aspects of Chinese sociolinguistics, 1976, (pp. 21–25). Stanford: Stanford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. (1976) My linguistic autobiography. In Anwar S. Dil (Ed.), Aspects of Chinese sociolinguistics (pp. 1–20). Stanford: Stanford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Cook, Edwin A
    (1966) Narak: Language or dialect?Journal of the Polynesian Society, 75(4), 437–444.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Dede, Keith
    (2006) Standard Chinese and the Xining dialect: The rise of an interdialectal standard. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, 16(2), 319–334. doi: 10.1075/japc.16.2.10ded
    https://doi.org/10.1075/japc.16.2.10ded [Google Scholar]
  6. Dorian, Nancy C
    (1977) The problem of the semi-speaker in language death. International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 12, 23–32.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Gao, Xuesong
    (2012) ‘Cantonese is not a dialect’: Chinese netizens’ defence of Cantonese as a regional lingua franca. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 33(5), 449–464. doi: 10.1080/01434632.2012.680461.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01434632.2012.680461 [Google Scholar]
  8. Garrett, P. , Coupland, N. , & Williams, A
    (2003) Investigating language attitudes: Social meanings of dialect, ethnicity, and performance. Cardiff: University of Wales Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Groves, Julie May
    (2008) A comparison of the attitudes of Hong Kongers and Mainland Chinese towards the status of Cantonese: Language or Dialect - or Topolect?Sino-Platonic Papers, Number 179.
    [Google Scholar]
  10. Hymes, D.H
    (1974) Foundations of sociolinguistics. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Karlgren, Bernhard
    (1962) Sound and symbol in Chinese. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Kratochvil, Pail
    (1968) The Chinese language today. London: Hutchinson.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Lambert, W.E. , Hodgson, R.C. , Gardner, R.C. , & S. Fillenbaum
    (1960) Evaluational reactions to Spoken language. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 60, 44–51. doi: 10.1037/h0044430
    https://doi.org/10.1037/h0044430 [Google Scholar]
  14. Li, Yuming
    (2010) Language planning in the People’s Republic of China. In M.E. van den Berg & Daming Xu (Eds.), Industrialization and the restructuring of speech communities in China and Europe (pp. 23–33). Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Li, Yanxuan
    (2012) Cantonese: Is it a dialect in China or language of the world? Paper for WRA 1004-009, Revising Literacy, April7 2012 (Professor Marohang Limbu, Michigan State University). wrakatrina.webs.com/p4revliteracy.htm, accessed on3/12/2016.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Lyons, John
    (1970) New horizons in linguistics. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Mair, Victor H
    (1991) What is a Chinese ‘dialect/topolect’? Reflections on some key Sino-English linguistic terms. Sino-Platonic Papers Number29.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Mau, Wing-yan, Annie
    (2005) Cantonese: Language or dialect?MA dissertation. Hong Kong: University of Hongkong.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. McMillan, D.W. , & Chavis, D.M
    (1986) Sense of community: A definition and theory. Journal of Community Psychology, 14, 6–23. doi: 10.1002/1520‑6629(198601)14:1<6::AID‑JCOP2290140103>3.0.CO;2‑I
    https://doi.org/10.1002/1520-6629(198601)14:1<6::AID-JCOP2290140103>3.0.CO;2-I [Google Scholar]
  20. Miao, Ruiqin , & Li, Jiaxuan
    (2006) Urban migration and functional bilingualism in Guangdong Province, China. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, 16(2), 237–257. doi: 10.1075/japc.16.2.06mia
    https://doi.org/10.1075/japc.16.2.06mia [Google Scholar]
  21. Münstermann, Henk
    (1989) Dialect loss in Maastricht: Attitudes, functions and structures. In K. Deprez (Ed.), Language and intergroup relations in Flanders and in the Netherlands (pp. 99–128). Dordrecht: De Gruyter.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Ni, Viviane
    (2011) Getting your employees a Hukou – An unavoidable HR issue in China. China Briefing, May4 2011.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Ramsey, S. Robert
    (1987) The languages of China. Princeton N.J.: Princeton University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Tang, Chaoju , & Van Heuven , Vincent J
    (2010) Predicting mutual intelligibility in Chinese dialects from subjective and objective linguistic similarity. In M.E. van den Berg & Daming Xu (Eds.), Industrialization and the restructuring of speech communities in China and Europe (pp. 91–119). Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. Tönnies, F
    (1887/1955) Community and association. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Trudgill, Peter
    (2011) Sociolinguistic typology: Social determinants of linguistic complexity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Van den Berg, M.E
    (2010) Socio-economic stratification in the Guangzhou speech community: Language behaviour in shopping areas of Yuexiu and Tianhe Districts. In M.E. van den Berg & Daming Xu (Eds.), Industrialization and the restructuring of speech communities in China and Europe (pp. 236–268). Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. VanNess Simmons, Richard
    (2010) Measuring lexical competition in the four contending dialect types of Jiītán county. In M.E. van den Berg & Daming Xu (Eds.), Industrialization and the restructuring of speech communities in China and Europe (pp. 191–235). Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Wurm, S.A. , & Laycock, D.C
    (1961) The question of language and dialect in New Guinea. Oceania, 32(2), 128–143. doi: 10.1002/j.1834‑4461.1961.tb01747.x
    https://doi.org/10.1002/j.1834-4461.1961.tb01747.x [Google Scholar]
  30. Xu Daming
    (2004)  Yanyu shequ lilun [Speech community theory]. Journal of Chinese Sociolinguistics, 1, 18–28.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. Xu, Daming
    (2006) Nanjing language survey and the theory of speech community. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, 16(2), 175–196. doi: 10.1075/japc.16.2.03xu
    https://doi.org/10.1075/japc.16.2.03xu [Google Scholar]
  32. (2010) The formation of a speech community: Mandarin nasal finals in Baotou. In M.E. van den Berg & Daming Xu (Eds.), Industrialization and the re-structuring of speech communities in China and Europe (pp. 120–140). Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    [Google Scholar]
  33. (2012) Speech communities in transformation: The effects of linguistic urbanization in China. Plenary Speech at Sociolinguistics Symposium 19, August 21–24, Berlin, Germany.
    [Google Scholar]
  34. (2015) Speech community and linguistic urbanization: Sociolinguistic theories developed in China. In Dick Smakman & Patrick Heinrich (Eds.), Globalizing sociolinguistics: Challenging and expanding theory (pp. 95–106). London and New York: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  35. Yang, Jinyi
    (2006) Language choice and industrialization: A case study of language use in Luoyang, China. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, 16(2), 259–278. doi: 10.1075/japc.16.2.07yan
    https://doi.org/10.1075/japc.16.2.07yan [Google Scholar]
  36. Zhan, Bohui
    (1993) Putonghua ‘nanxia’ yu Yue fangyan ‘beishang’. (“Southbound” Putonghua and “Northbound” Cantonese.)Xueshu Yanjiu, 4, 67–72.
    [Google Scholar]
  37. Zhang, Xiaoheng
    (1998) Dialect MT: A case study between Cantonese and Mandarin. In Christian Boitet & Pete Whitelock (Eds.), ‘Proceedings of 36th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 17th international conference on Computational linguistics (pp.1460–1464). Burlington, Mass.: Morgan Kaufmann Publishers / ACL. doi: 10.3115/980691.980807
    https://doi.org/10.3115/980691.980807 [Google Scholar]
  38. Zhou, Minglang
    (2006) Theorizing language contact, spread, and variation in status planning: A case study of Modern Standard Chinese. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, 16(2), 159–174. doi: 10.1075/japc.16.2.02zho
    https://doi.org/10.1075/japc.16.2.02zho [Google Scholar]
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1075/japc.26.1.01xu
Loading
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error