Language and Societies

ANT/LIN 5320 at Wayne State University

Sundanese Speech Levels

Sundanese Speech Levels


This paper aims to provide a perspective that demonstrates speech levels are governed by social status. Sundanese grammar highlights that speech levels as linguistic forms impose relative social differences. It has been assumed that social structure and language use have a static relationship. However, in actual conversation as well as in structured conversation, the use of speech levels appears to be far more dynamic than previously thought, and people strategically make use of speech to regulate and negotiate their interpersonal relationships, not always merely follow social conventions. From the view of linguistic as a status maker (e.g. Agha 2007; Brown and Gilman 1961), this study is concerned with how to relate linguistic forms to social interaction. Thus, this paper examines what each speech level means socially and how it relates to social meanings within given conversational contexts. This paper also explores historically how many levels Sundanese has, how they have become a part in Sundanese linguistic form, how they are used, and what has happened to them in relation to the Indonesian language. This paper examines material from previous studies of speech levels (e.g. Wessing (1974) and Anderson (2009)) as well as new materials that are proposed by others, typically by Adang (1988) and Locher (1996). The analysis will further demonstrate the use of speech levels in various social contexts.

April 9, 2014 - Posted by | abstract

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