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“like, local people doing that”: Variation in the production and social perception of discourse-pragmatic like in Pidgin and Hawai‘i English

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Title:“like, local people doing that”: Variation in the production and social perception of discourse-pragmatic like in Pidgin and Hawai‘i English
Authors:Stabile, Claire Marie
Contributors:Drager, Katie (advisor)
Deen, Kamil Ud (advisor)
Linguistics (department)
Scandinavian studies
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Date Issued:2019
Publisher:University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Abstract:This dissertation examines variation and change in discourse-pragmatic like, in two languages of Hawai‘i, Pidgin (Hawai‘i Creole) and Hawai‘i English (a local variety of English). While discourse-pragmatic like has been the focus of robust study in global Englishes, to date, no such study has examined this phenomenon in Hawai‘i, making this dissertation the first of its kind.
Combining results from a matched-guise perception experiment with multiple corpus-based analyses, this study provides a unique perspective on how this rapid, global language change is operating within a local, multilingual context and also provides insights into what type of social work like is performing for different groups of speakers in Hawai‘i.
Major findings show that in Hawai‘i, discourse-pragmatic like is patterning similarly with other varieties studied worldwide, with a few interesting differences. Young Pidgin speaking men in Hawai‘i use discourse marker like at higher rates than young women. In Hawai‘i English, however, women and men pattern more similarly. This finding deviates from patterns observed in other studied varieties, where young men are using discourse marker like at lower rates than young women (D'Arcy, 2007). A novel approach developed in this dissertation examines how speakers are using discourse marker like within the context of the surrounding discourse; for example, to elaborate, clarify, or provide illustrative commentary.
By examining discourse-pragmatic like in Hawai‘i using both a perception experiment as well as multiple corpus analyses, the work presented here not only provides a detailed description of discourse-pragmatic like in Hawai‘i, but provides methodological recommendations for other researchers conducting future work on discourse-pragmatic elements.
Pages/Duration:95 pages
Rights:All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections: Ph.D. - Linguistics

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