Sociolinguistics is the branch of linguistics that deals with the study of language in relation to
society. (OR) The study of language from a social perspective. (OR) Study of the social or cultural effect on a language.
What is language?
Language is a unique possession of a man or we can say that it is God’s gift to mankind. Language is everywhere. It is an instrument of thinking or a source of delight.
For Example Songs and music.
Man would have remained only a dumbed animal without language. So language differentiates us
What is society?
A large number of people living together in a specific geographical area have a common culture and feelings of association.
Now there are some social factors that influence language.
- Social class or sociolect
Borrowing is when we borrow one word from another language and added to our own language.
For example hospitals, Assemblies, agencies, colleges, Bus stops, and airports.
Now there are also some situations that we have to take care of while borrowing words.
- If there is monolingualism then there will be no borrowing.
- If someone got two languages as a mother tongue then there will be no borrowing. It will be code-switching.
- If a speech community has limited bilingualism then there will be high borrowing.
In our Urdu and Pashto language, we borrow different words from English so that is the influence of English people or society on us.
Now pronouncing the same words in different ways is also a great influence on society. Most of the people belonging to Dir cannot differentiate between “P” and “F”.
For example: (Footpath or Football)
So they are saying pootball instead of football or pootpath instead of a footpath. But if we talk about those people who belong to Dir and were brought up in Peshawar, Islamabad, or another city. So they will be able to differentiate between these two “P” and “F”.
Another example is British vs American pronunciation.
Britishers did not pronounce “R” in the last while Americans do.
For example Water, teacher, father, mother, and brother. So that is the effect of society on that particular person which makes that person able to differentiate.
Another example is the people of Bannu and the people of Peshawar have different ways of pronouncing words which indicates the influence of society.
Peshawar vs Bannu
Dalay rosha vs dalta rasha
Wayrsa vs warza
Register is a variety of languages used by a specific group of people or a variety of languages used in different social situations. (OR) We can also say that it is a language of the profession.
It may be formal and informal as well. It may be in written form or it may be in spoken form.
For Example: if a person is a Butcher so whenever he use to talk to someone he will use Butcher language.
for example (Meat is 100 rupees per kg) etc. while on the other hand if a doctor uses to talk to each other so they will not use butcher language but instead they will use their own vocabulary and profession. Similarly, if a property dealer convinces someone so he is saying “This is very comfortable and well ventilate home”. So with respect to their profession, this sentence will become part of his life.
Jorgen is a specific language for a specific profession. In other words, the register is highly influenced by field-specific words (Jorgen). We tend to use words similar to our educational field.
Jorgen helps to create and maintain connections between those who see themselves as “insider” in some way and to exclude “Outsiders”. Here insider means I talking to the linguist student or my class fellow or talking to those who studying linguistics.
So they all will be considered insiders. Because they fall under my subject and outsider are those who do not belong to linguistics.
So he will be an outsider to me. So I can talk to insiders with a special technical vocabulary but not with outsider.
In hospitals, doctors are talking to each other in technical words. So we are not understanding the words they use. Even we understand one or two words but not completely.
Sometimes when someone died so we say he/she died but doctors did not say this they simply say (Expire). So we use expire only for medicines but doctors also use it for someone who died.
Similarly, they are using different words but we did not understand just like the word (dose) they
Two or more varieties of the same language on the basis of class difference is called sociolect.
For example, in our society, there are three types of people. Elite class, middle class, and lower class. So these three classes speak differently from one another. Their grammar, vocabulary, and intonation will be different. So if we talk to villagers so they will speak differently as compared to cities people. So the study of these things is called sociolect.
Another example is the difference between the language of laborers and an officer.