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Dialect Contact and Social Networks

Hirano, Keiko

Dialect Contact and Social Networks

Language Change in an Anglophone Community in Japan

Series: Bamberger Beiträge zur Englischen Sprachwissenschaft / Bamberg Studies in English Linguistics - Volume 56

Year of Publication: 2013

Frankfurt am Main, Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2013. XXVIII, 314 pp., 87 tables, 63 graphs
ISBN 978-3-631-62776-1 hb.  (Hardcover)

Weight: 0.570 kg, 1.257 lbs

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Book synopsis

This book explores a dialect contact situation in a second language setting – native speakers of English coming to Japan from different parts of the world as English teachers. It focuses on an Anglophone community in which speakers are socially and geographically mobile and have loose-knit networks with speakers of different languages and dialects. This longitudinal sociolinguistic study aims to investigate the relatively short-term linguistic changes induced by frequent face-to-face interaction with speakers of different dialects and to illustrate the impact of social network effects. Statistical analyses reveal that the individual speakers’ interpersonal ties are important factors that influence the linguistic behaviour of the speakers in a dialect contact situation in an L2 setting.


Contents: English Education and the Anglophone Community in Japan – Theoretical Background and Previous Research – Hypotheses and Research Questions – Linguistic Variables – Methodology – Results – Discussion of the Results of this Study.

About the author(s)/editor(s)

Keiko Hirano received her PhD in Linguistics from the University of Essex, and is currently Professor at the Department of English, Faculty of Foreign Studies, University of Kitakyushu (Japan). Her research focuses on dialect contact, variation and change in the English language.


«[Hirano’s book] is a very interesting, stringently planned and conducted study about an area which is little inverstigated to date. It is absolutely interesting for readers with previous knowledge in this field as well as for readers without such previous knowledge.» (Jana Neuhaus, Lingua 158, 2015)


Bamberg Studies in English Linguistics. Vol. 56
Edited by Manfred Krug, Heinrich Ramisch and Wolfgang Viereck