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Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You Lecture

Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You

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Publisher's Summary

Language is not a passive means of communication. In fact, it's the active process through which we construct societies, and, within them, our own social lives and realities. Language - as we use it in our day-to-day interactions - fundamentally shapes our experience, our thinking, our perceptions, and the very social systems within which our lives unfold.

Nowhere is the social role of language revealed more clearly than in the fascinating field of sociolinguistics. Among many eye-opening perspectives, the work of sociolinguistics points out that:

  • Language is strong social capital, and our linguistic choices carry both costs and benefits we rarely consider.
  • Our identity is strongly tied to the speech we use and our perceptions of the speech we hear.
  • Our children are raised, our relationships are made, and our careers succeed, in large part, through how we use language.
  • Language embodies a worldview: Your linguistic system reflects and affects the way you organize and understand the world around you.

In these 24 thought-provoking lectures, you'll investigate how social differences based on factors such as region, class, ethnicity, occupation, gender, and age are inseparable from language differences. Further, you'll explore how these linguistic differences arise, and how they both reflect and generate our social systems. You'll look at the remarkable ways in which our society is a reflection of our language, how differences in the way people use language create differences in society, how people construct and define social contexts by their language use, and ultimately why our speech reveals so much about us. Join a brilliantly insightful sociolinguist and teacher in a compelling inquiry that sheds light on how our linguistic choices play a determining role in every aspect of our lives.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2014 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2014 The Great Courses

What Members Say

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Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

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  • Amazon Customer
    Phoenix, AZ USA
    8/04/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Like nails on a chalkboard"
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor Valerie Fridland?

    Yes but not if Mrs Fridland narrates it. One of the other reviewers pointed out how annoying her voice is and I have to agree. It's shrill, weirdly chipper,and just not comfortable to listen to for more than a few minutes.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You?

    I zoned out a lot during this audio book, something that very rarely happens. Mrs Fridland just didn't keep me interested all that long. The few points I do remember were interesting though.


    What didn’t you like about Professor Valerie Fridland’s performance?

    She has a high pitched voice, too shrill. Not pleasant.


    Was Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You worth the listening time?

    I didn't retain a lot of the concepts. This might be a lecture better ingested from a written source material.


    Any additional comments?

    The content is interesting but I just couldn't finish it. Mrs Fridland's voice and fact that visualizing language-based concepts is hard make this for a fairly tough audio book to get through.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • M. S. Cohen
    New York, NY USA
    12/01/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Nothing like the other Great Courses"

    At the beginning of this book, Professor Fridland asks us to listen to her voice and then imagine what she is. Old, young? Where is she from? Educated or not?

    From her speech, I got a 22 year old California sufer gal (for sure) with litter interests beyond shopping.

    Turns out she's older and from the south. But I got none of that.

    This book was a terrible disappointment. Not only does the professor sound like a college student, she put together a terrible course.

    Over and over she would say something like "And there are many words that these people use in ways no other society does." This screams for a "for instance" or example. But she gave them so seldom you would think they came out of her salary to insert.

    I wish I could return this book, but I fear I've kept it too long. (I kept trying to get through it, but couldn't get more than 15% of the way through.

    The idea of an audio book on language and dialects is a great idea that goes way beyond what print can do. Unfortunately, this book doesn't rise to the concept.

    20 of 24 people found this review helpful
  • Tyler
    Red Deer, AB, Canada
    2/07/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A lot of knowledge packed into this class."

    First of all I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this in a previous review but I'm quite excited about the fact Audible is offering these Great Courses selections.

    Anyway, the narrator is OK here, but the real gem is the content itself. If you are, were, or are someday considering studying English literature I strongly recommend this course!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Jerusha Nelson
    Tacoma, WA
    3/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Incredibly frustrating narrator"

    This book was maddening. For a linguist and professional speaker, the narrator sure struggled with the English language. She was constantly stumbling on her words and laughing at her terrible jokes. I couldn't force myself to finish it.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Sundogs3
    Hendersonville, NC
    11/01/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very interesting"

    I really enjoyed these lectures. I have always been interested in accents and dialects and this lecture series was perfect and comprehensive.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • beotherworldly
    Florida, USA
    16/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Lots of asides"

    I love language and linguistics and this lecture is great if you want more information on how language functions in society. The main drawback for me was the high number of corny jokes and asides the author makes. They add a nice touch of casualness if you like that kind of thing in a lecture, but I wasn't particularly impressed by them. (and there's a lot of jokes and asides)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • OK Tamease
    United States, NJ - Central Location
    4/07/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dull- does not hold my attention."
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor Valerie Fridland?

    Yes, I would buy another book from the Great Courses, but not Professor Firdland.


    What was most disappointing about The Great Courses’s story?

    The course is boring.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Yes.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment. I love the topic, but could not handle the narration. .


    Any additional comments?

    I will return the course.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Noah Lugeons
    8/06/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Worst Great Courses I've Heard"

    Painful attempts at humor, sudden yelling, and a subtitle so inaacurate I'd call it deceptive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bianca
    18/03/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Boring"

    The sample listening was the only interesting part of this audiobook. Not enjoyable at all ........5 words remaining words remaining

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Marco Antonio Lara
    Houston
    11/11/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sad Clown"

    This poor uncharismatic women comes across as a squawkingly brainless air-head with her vapid, annoying American housewife voice and superficial, disqualifying nonsense of humor. No matter how solid her scholarly authority is (and to me it is only satisfactory, on a high school level), she undermines any academic legitimacy or popular appeal with butterfly frivolity, incoherence and stupid, insecure attempts at being cute. The first eight lessons are enough to stifle anyone's interest (there is some improvement after), she repeats herself, including painful jokes, and presents examples and illustration with clumsy ineptness. There should be more and better spoken clips, and they need more vivid analysis. Though she is qualified in her field, she murders the subject. Slow down, don't try to be funny, stop giggling, and go into greater depth in at least a few aspects of sociolinguistics.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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  • lorraine
    11/05/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narration far too fast"

    Narration was far too fast to hear clearly and without pauses, therefore no time to consider what had been discussed.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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