Essay Sociolinguistic

This assignment requires you to give a critical synthesis of Becker’s (2009) study of /r/ and the construction of place identity on New York City’s Lower East Side. 

To understand this study, you should first read relevant sections, in Mesthrie et al. (2009), on Labov’s ‘big’ New York City Study and Labov’s Department Store Study (Labov, 2009 [1972])

The essay should answer these questions : Examine the role of ‘linguistic resource /r/’, or (non)-rhoticity, in the construction of place identity in New York City’s Lower East Siders’ talk. In what ways does this linguistic resource contribute to the construction of place identity in the talk of Lower East Siders? How do Lower East Sider’s strategically use this resource to index a New York City identity? Discuss this question making close reference to research findings in Becker’s (2009) study. That is, you must engage with specific aspects of the data presented in the study, not just with the author’s interpretations. However, you should not digress in lengthy descriptions of data collection procedures, methods, etc., unless they are directly relevant to the discussion of a particular methodological issue in relation to the focus of your paper.

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