Child Language Variation
  • ISSN 2211-6834
  • E-ISSN: 2211-6842
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Through ethnographic investigation, this study shows that the different linguistic behavior of girls and boys in the village of Oyoun Al-Wadi in Syria is due to gendered linguistic ideologies and attitudes that are utilized in different ways to project gendered (feminine or masculine) and spatial (local or supralocal) identities. Social meanings are gleaned from the naturally occurring speech of 72 speakers aged 6–18 and 29–57 to illuminate the ideologies and attitudes that result in inter- and intra-speaker variation between and among boys and girls and highlight the importance of both the community of practice and the speech community in investigating linguistic variation. The study also highlights the growth of the children’s sociolinguistic competence and their awareness from a very young age of the ideologies and attitudes that exist in their community and their capability to build on them. The results of this awareness are highly observed in preadolescents, particularly boys.


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