How do today's teenagers talk? What are the distinguishing features of their style of language, and what do they tell us about the English language more generally? Drawing on a huge corpus of examples collected over a fifteen-year period, Sali A. Tagliamonte undertakes a detailed study of adolescents' language and argues that it acts as a 'bellwether' for the future of the English language. Teenagers are often accused of 'lowering the standards' of the English language by the way they talk and text. From spoken words - 'like', 'so', 'just', and 'stuff' - to abbreviated expressions used online, this fascinating book puts young people's language under the microscope, examining and demystifying the origins of new words, and tracking how they vary according to gender, geographical location, and social circumstances. Highly topical and full of new insights, the book is essential reading for anyone interested in how teenagers talk.
Sali A. Tagliamonte is a Professor of Linguistics at the University of Toronto and a member of the Royal Society of Canada. She has published five books on varieties of English, dialects, variation, and how to observe, analyse and understand language.
1. What's all the fuss about teen language?; 2. Teens talking; 3. Methods: how to tap teen language?; 4. Quotatives: I'm like, 'Oh my God!'; 5. Intensifiers: upping the ante: super cool!; 6. How do you start a sentence?; 7. Sentence enders: finish with a flourish; 8. Generics: stuffology; 9. Just: just what?; 10. Adjectives: the good, the bad and lovely; 11. Other funky teenage features: you know what? I dunno. Whatever!; 12. Internet language: everyone's online; 13. Are they always going to talk like that?