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Industrialization and the Restructuring of Speech Communities in China and Europe

Industrialization and the Restructuring of Speech Communities in China and Europe

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  • ISBN-13: 9781443823807
  • Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
  • Release Date: Oct 01, 2010
  • Edition: New edition
  • Pages: 335 pages
  • Dimensions: 1.2 x 8.1 x 5.9 inches


This book documents the changing language situation in urban centres in China, gauging the impact of industrialization and the consequent population movement on forms of language communication. Research reports detailing aspects of the new and emerging language situation demonstrate the interplay of the Chinese standard language, Putonghua, and various Chinese dialects. Urban areas covered are Baotou (Inner Mongolia), Jintan (Jiangsu), Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Hainan island. The Chinese transition to an industrial society is contrasted with post-industrialized societies in Europe. The latter are represented by studies of the Dutch and German language situation. The empirical studies are preceded by an overview of China s language planning efforts, an analysis of the position of the Chinese language in the World Language System, a comparison of Chinese and European urban environments, an introduction of the Chinese Dialect Preservation Project, and an experimental study of the mutual intelligibility between Chinese dialects. The contributions are all original and they address current issues in the Chinese language situation, exemplifying innovative applications and development of sociolinguistic theories. The book therefore is a must-read for linguists, sociolinguistics, Chinese language students and China experts.

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