Jack Grieve @ LEL Research Seminar

Posted on March 18, 2018 by

Next week, we welcome Jack Grieve at the LEL Research Seminars. Jack is a Professorial Fellow in Corpus Linguistics at the University of Birmingham. His primary research interests are “language variation and change through the quantitative analysis of large corpora of natural language data.” His talk will focus on language change led by cultural change (see abstract below).

The seminar details are as follows:

Room Booked: Ellen Wilkinson_A3.7 (note that this is not the usual room!)

Date: Thu 22 Mar 2018

Time: 16:15 – 17:30

As usual, the talk will be followed by a drinks reception and dinner.

We look forward to seeing you there!


Language Change Led by Cultural Change

Jack Grieve

(University of Birmingham)

In this talk, I present findings from four recent corpus-based studies I have been working on that show how language change can be led by cultural change — as a reaction to change in the communicative needs of a society.

1.  Change in American dialect regions
2.  The emergence and perseverance of new words on Twitter (2014-2016)
3.  Change in Donald Trump’s Twitter style (2009-2017)
4.  Change in British patent structure (1740-2011)

I argue that in all cases the linguistic changes observed can primarily be explained based on changes in the cultural contexts in which these varieties of language are produced.