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Concepts of language and dialect and sociolinguistic prejudice

Author(s): Djiby Mané

Journal: Via Litterae
ISSN 2176-6800

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 39;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: Language | Dialect | Variety | Prejudice

This article aims at conceptualizing and distinguishing between the terms language and dialect in order to provide solution to the confusion about whether a given linguistic variety is a language or a dialect. This confusion seems to be due to either lack of knowledge on linguistics or just prejudice. Conceptualize language and dialect is not an easy task. It is believed that language varieties are often called dialects for various reasons: they are not known as literary languages; their speakers do not have their own state; their language does not have prestige; or they are socioeconomically disadvantaged. In order to make this distinction, besides linguistic aspects, we will take into account historical, geographic, and sociopolitical factors. According to its methodology this was a bibliographic research based on theorists such as HAUGEN (1966), TRUDGILL (1980) and WEINREICH (1974). However, the most frequent linguistic occurrences in daily activities of the speakers were also registered.
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