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Dialect Essay

1348 words - 6 pages

In this essay I will be exploring some aspects of the ways my speech changes accordingg to the context I am in.
I have a very bubbly and funny personality. I always say little jokes which make people laugh. I also am a girl, this contributes towards forming my idiolect because I use more Hedges such as ‘kind of’ and talk about more emotional topics. I also am a teenager and this contributes to my idiolect very much because I am around a social group and we all share words and phrases and we use them every day.
One thing that I picked up from my transcripts is that I tend to use some northern dialect in my speech, such as ‘lads’ instead of boys, ‘ano’ instead of I know and instead of ...view middle of the document...

By talking about serious topics it engages my mum into the conversation as she is a head teacher and it makes her think that I am proud of her achievements and that she is a good role model to me. Furthermore it reveals that my mum has power because I am telling her my achievements which might hint that I want something or I want her to be proud of me.
Another example of where my lexis differs in different contexts is when I speak to teachers. I use context specific language such as ‘exam’, ‘mark’, ‘grade’, ‘revise’ and ‘planner’. By using these words it highlights to the teacher that I am interested in this subject and what to get good grades. However when talking to a teacher who teaches me a subject I do not like I often pay very little attention to what they are saying and nod or say ‘yes’, ‘really’ and ‘uhuh’. This is called back channelling. This may come across to the teacher that I am being rude because I am not using context specific language or answering in full sentences.
Throughout my transcript involving me and my younger sister I have realised that my idiolect changes. I tend to try and use more formal language. For example instead of using elisions like ‘whajumean’, which I would use around my social group, I make the effort to speak closer to Standard English and say ‘What do you mean?’ This is so my sister can understand what I am saying. Furthermore it implies that I want to be a positive role model to my sister. Throughout the transcript I also do a lot of back tracking and speak at a slower paste for example ‘go and get that, go and get that’. I do this because she is much younger than me and so can easily lose track of what she was going to say. I also attempt not to overlap as this could increase the possibility of non fluency features and pauses. However when talking to older siblings I do not give orders/demands. I will say ‘please can you get me that?’ This shows that my status changes because I no longer have the power to demand people around , I have to change my lexis to a more polite approach.
In conclusion this project has showed me that I have been unaware of how much my idiolect and lexis changes depending on the context I am in. It is also clear that slang, elision, fillers and overlapping occur more frequently when I am around my social group. This is mainly because I use this language at school every day and I try to fit in my using this. However when I am around teachers, family and people who I don’t know my lexis and speech is more fluent, context specific and...

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