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Look Inside Culture and Language Development

Culture and Language Development
Language Acquisition and Language Socialization in a Samoan Village

$37.99 (C)

Part of Studies in the Social and Cultural Foundations of Language

Shirley Brice Heath
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  • Date Published: August 1988
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521348942

$ 37.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • As children are learning to become competent members of their society, so also are they learning to become competent speakers of their language. In other words socialisation and language acquisition take place at the same time in a child's experience. In this book, Elinor Ochs explores the complex interaction of these two processes. Focusing in particular on the experiences of children in Samoa, Ochs examines both the cognitive and socio-cultural dimensions of children's language development. She shows that language competence includes not only knowledge of grammatical principles and sentence construction but also knowledge of the norms that link language to social and cognitive context; and that local social and cultural systems as well as children's individual psychological and biological capacities, organise their understanding and production of particular language constructions. This innovative study will appeal widely to anthropologists, developmental psychologists, psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, communication specialists and educationists interested in child development and caregiver-child communication.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 1988
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521348942
    • length: 280 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.42kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of photographs
    Foreword by Shirley Brice Heath
    1. To know a language
    2. Methodology
    3. Introduction to Samoan language usage: grammar and register
    4. The social contexts of childhood: village and household organisation
    5. Ergative case marking: variation and acquisition
    6. Word-order strategies: the two-constituent bias
    7. Clarification
    8. Affect, social control and the Samoan child
    9. The linguistic expression of affect
    10. Literacy instruction in a Samoan village
    11. Language as a symbol and tool
    Appendix I. Transcription conventions
    Appendix II. Canonical transitive verb types in children's speech

  • Author

    Elinor Ochs


    Shirley Brice Heath

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