Linguistic accommodation and the salience of national identity markers in a border town

Carmen Llamas, Dominic Watt, Daniel Ezra Johnson

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This study tests the extent of speakers’ linguistic accommodation to members of putative in-groups and out-groups in a border locality where such categorizations can be said to be particularly accentuated. Variation in the speech of informants in dialect contact interactions with separate interviewers is analyzed for evidence of speech accommodation in the form of phonological convergence or divergence. The data do not support a straightforward interpretation of accommodation, and findings are considered in terms of evidence required for such an account. Implications for the notion of salience in explanations of contact-induced language change are also considered, as is the significance of the “interviewer effect” in the compilation of data sets for use in quantitative studies of phonological variation and change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-407
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Language and Social Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2009

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