7308.11 - Linguistic Diversity

Course number
Linguistic Diversity
By course end, students will have gained an understanding of a) the history and current state of the Faroese speech community, and of the factors that contribute to changes in languages and dialects b) the discipline of researching language usage and documenting research data and results c) the terminology, theories and methods of the linguistic and sociological study of languages
The course stretches over four weeks, meeting twice weekly. This course is on linguistic diversity and the factors that influence and/or induce diversity in language usage. Usage, dialects (regional and social), linguistic registries are among the topics covered. We will also consider how linguistic and sociological methods are used when working with data pertaining to language usage. The course presupposes a thorough knowledge of Faroese grammar and some knowledge of Old Norse and phonetics. The course will survey particular characteristics of rural dialects in the Faroes. The language usage of particular social groups, linguistic registers and linguistic customs will also be considered. Examining theoretical works on linguistic diversity and comparing these with the actual situation in the Faroes will accomplish this. In the same vein, students will listen to new and old sound recordings, and they will analyse old texts that use phonetic spelling. Dialogue on language usage and changes in language are an inherent part of the course. Students will be enabled to understand and distinguish technical terms such as dialect continuum, relict language area, linguistic island, the category and prototype theory, real-time and apparent time research, isogloss, socio-linguistic variations, and they will discuss identity, stigmatisation and prejudice in connection with particular language usages. Students will primarily work with the Faroese language, but examples from other languages will be used, when this expands their understanding.
Assessment method
A 4-hour written exams, no books or study aids allowed. Internal examiners will be used. Grades will be awarded according to the current grading scale.