Courses in Linguistics (Division 423)

211. Introduction to Language. (SS).

Linguistics 211 is not a course in the structure of language, but rather the ways in which linguists analyze specifically the relationship between language and people. The approach to these issues will be from two perspectives, cognitive and social, in order to explain how linguists study language. By doing so we address five basic questions: (1) What capacity enables us to use language? This ties into language acquisition studies. (2) What is the relationship between language, culture, and society? (3) Why don't we all speak the same language and in the same way? This ties into theories of variation and change. (4) How do people use language to do things? This ties into discourse and discourse structures. (5) Can language and language use be governed by society? This ties into language planning and language maintenance. The course will conclude with an investigation of the "English As The Official Language" movement. Grades will be based on a midterm, a final, and a group project. (Cukor-Avila)

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