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Saturday, October 12 • 11:45am - 12:10pm
Hall-Lew et al.: Breksit or Bregzit: When political ideology drives language ideology

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Breksit or Bregzit: When political ideology drives language ideology

'Brexit' was coined for the 2016 referendum on the UK’s membership in the EU. We analyze variation in the pronunciation of 'Brexit' ([bɹɛksɪt] vs. [bɹɛgzɪt]) to explore how that contrast has been ideologically linked to political meanings. We find that neither a production study nor a Matched Guise Study support the same indexical relations that are prevalent in Twitter metacommentary. Variation in 'Brexit' does not appear to correlate with any social factors in production and only in limited ways in perception. The social meanings indexed on Twitter are highly varied, and any ‘kernel of similarity’ (Podesva 2008) seems to be an indexing of the (political) Other, rather than a specific political stance. In contrast to variables that become politicised via non-political indexicalities (Hall-Lew et al., 2010; 2012; 2017), variation in 'Brexit' appears to be ideologised from the indexical potential of phonetic markedness in combination with a divisive political issue.

avatar for Lauren Hall-Lew

Lauren Hall-Lew

University of Edinburgh

Julian Shen

The University of Edinburgh

Graeme Trousdale

The University of Edinburgh

Yihua Zhang

The University of Edinburgh

Saturday October 12, 2019 11:45am - 12:10pm PDT
EMU Crater Lake N
  T: Place & identity
  • Session type Talk
  • Chair: Nicole Holliday