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Style as Stance

Kiesling, SF (2009) Style as Stance. In: Stance: Sociolinguistic Perspectives. UNSPECIFIED. ISBN 9780195331646

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This chapter explores the relationship between stance and sociolinguistic style. It argues that stance is the basis of style in sociolinguistic variation: sociolinguistic variants are initially associated with interactional stances, and these stances become reified in a speech community over time and repeated use. The chapter thus evaluates the possibility that stance is the main explanation for patterns of sociolinguistic variation, such that any choice of linguistic form made by speakers is made ultimately because of the interpersonal or epistemic stances they wish to take with their various interlocutors, the content of their talk, and nonpresent1 others. The chapter argues that these stance indexicalities become "short-circuited," so that ways of speaking become associated with situations and speaking roles in which certain stances are customarily taken. Styles of speaking are thus shorthand for bundles of habitually taken stances. The chapter thus connects the everyday use of language variation in discourse to the ways that it patterns on larger social scales, and to test the hypothesis that this connection can be made through the concept of stance. After a short discussion of the concepts of style, stance, and indexicality, the chapter demonstrates the importance of stance in variation patterns through three examples.


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Item Type: Book Section
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Kiesling, SFkiesling@pitt.eduKIESLING0000-0003-4954-1038
Date: 1 September 2009
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195331646.003.0008
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Linguistics
Refereed: Yes
ISBN: 9780195331646
Title of Book: Stance: Sociolinguistic Perspectives
Date Deposited: 01 Jun 2016 17:44
Last Modified: 30 Mar 2021 12:55


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