Date: Thu, 29 Sep 1994 10:17:45 -0500 From: "Timothy C. Frazer" Subject: Re: Textbooks for Sociolinguistics On Thu, 29 Sep 1994, Natalie Maynor wrote: > As long as we're on a textbook thread, do any of you have suggestions > for Sociolinguistics? I've got to turn in a book order for it next week. > The two times I've taught the course before I've used Wardhaugh. Although > it works ok, the students find it a bit dry and boring. So do I. I've > thought about using Fasold but don't want to make the students buy two > books and am not sure that buying just one of the two would give a full > enough view (_Sociolinguistics of Language_ and _Sociolinguistics of > Society_). > --Natalie (maynor[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] Elaine chaika's {Language: the Social Mirror} is highly readable and fun for the sorts of students I teach, who will not become professional lignuists. I might nit-pick with her over some details, but it's way better than the others in terms of student enjoyment. i can't remember all the chapters offhand, but i know it covers bilingualism, style (e.g., register), kinesics, oral culture (raps, ritual insults, etc.), pragmatics (speech acts, etc.) atlas-type dialectology, Labovian dialectology, interactional structure, and gender. There's a final chapter on sociolinguistics and the professions (law, etc.) that I haven't yet used or read. Most chapters have some exercises and mini-reserach project at the end that I require my student to do, selectively, and write up. They are very provocative. I supplement the text with a Tannen book because I do a lot on gender. I also use some extra handouts I write on the dialectology of my region, since Chaika is not familiar with the midwest. She has some good references to language variation in movies, TV shows, and Rock music (the latter a little dated unless you have older students who grew up with the Stones and Beatles). Students always rate this text very highly. I also use Wolfram's {American Dialects} (not the title-?????????) which I like but which the students find boring. I wish Robbins Burling would do an update and reissue {English in Black and White}. Tim Frazer