Who wants to help me with my linguistics exam?

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by mrow, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,041
    Please? I'm awful at it.

    I need to know the following terms:

    Malinowski’s “language as action”
    Speech Act Theory
    J.L. Austin
    Locution, Illocution, Perlocution
    Discourse
    Hegemony
    Imagined Community
    Contact Zone
    Pidgin
    Creole
    Language Shift and Obsolenscence
    Codeswitching (Situational and Metaphorical)
    Gesture (Form, Action, Ideology)
     
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  3. Enmos Staff Member

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    I would if I could Mrow, but I have no clue.
    Perhaps, if you have specific questions, you can ask Fraggle

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  5. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

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    Aw, that's ok, Enmos. I have no clue either. I doubt most people would. It's the worst class ever.

    I wish I had specific questions but I don't even know enough to have questions, lol. Thanks anyway!
     
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  7. Enmos Staff Member

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    Ow lol

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    Maybe PM Fraggle anyway, he's the linguist around here. So he might be able to give you some pointers

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  8. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Then why did you sign up for the course??? You can't possibly have assumed that it would be easy!
    I've never taken a class in linguistics. All I know I've learned by reading or by talking to people. I've never heard of Malinowski or Austin and I'm unfamiliar with most of the terms on your list.
    A pidgin is a simplified language developed by two linguistic groups who can't understand each other. It's usually based primarily on only one of the two languages but borrows from the other. The grammar, syntax and phonetics are very stripped-down, and the vocabulary includes only the words needed for contact, which is generally business.
    A creole is what a pidgin may evolve into if a couple of generations of people adopt it as their primary language. Its vocabulary is expanded to cover all of everyday life as well as culture. Not all pidgins survive to become creoles. The point at which we stop calling a language a creole is not well defined. The first few generations of Anglo-Saxon subjects of the Norman Invasion in 1066 undoubtedly spoke "pidgin French" with their occupiers, but within a century or two it became "Anglo-French," a distinct dialect of French.

    Wikipedia usually has good articles on academic terminology and theories, although you run the risk of it being written by one person who has his own agenda and not enough other people have cleaned it up. No American school at any level allows a Wikipedia article to be cited as a reference, but you're free to track down the genuine references listed at the bottom.
     
  9. CheskiChips Banned Banned

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    3,538
    Discourse is speech that requires specialized knowledge, and presents a concept using arguments.

    Hegemony is when one thing is pre-eminent over all others.

    Imagined Community is a community where you don't really know everyone, but you feel connection to them.

    Obsolescence is the removal of words as if they have become unfashionable despite they contain functionality.


    I don't know the rest.
     
  10. Vkothii Banned Banned

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    3,674
    This course may be about the way meaning is 'encoded', and how the encoding falls into patterns of usage, how the different languages 'mix' together. Stuff like that.
    It's a kind of computational/informational view, and human languages are very complex algebras. Lots of different 'levels' etc.

    Or that model is in there, and you'll need to get a handle on how languages are essentially information, and communication/computation (like most everything is).
     
  11. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

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    Thanks, Cheski and Fraggle. That helped

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    .

    And Fraggle, no, I did not assume it would be easy. I assumed I would have as hard a time with it as I'm having. Unfortunately, it is a required course for my major, so I really had no choice.
     
  12. greenberg until the end of the world Registered Senior Member

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    mrow,

    A few questions for you:
    1. When is your exam?
    2. Will it be possible to go to at least one office hours before the exam?
    3. Do you have a textbook in which the things you ask about in the OP are explained?
    4. Do you have a printer where you can print out stuff from the web?
     
  13. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

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    1,041
    1.Wednesday
    2.I did, it helped a little.
    3.I have three textbooks. They are written in a very roundabout and confusing way. They're all written by the game guy, who is a linguistic theorist, and he is very poetic in his writing as opposed to making his points clear.
    4.Yes, I do.
     
  14. greenberg until the end of the world Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,811
    Can you tell me the name of that linguist, please?

    The topics you have listed in the OP - is this all you need to know for the exam, or is there more - which you have already studied?

    What type of exam is it? Written - multiple choice, essay, short answers, a combination; or oral?
     
  15. greenberg until the end of the world Registered Senior Member

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    3,811
    Also, what time zone do you live in? So that we get some idea of how much time you have.
     
  16. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

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    1,041
    That's all I need to know. I know some of it but I figured I'd just post it all in case anyone on here had some more insight.

    It's 15 multiple choice and 6 essay questions (each of which are 3-5 paragraphs long).

    His name is Duranti.

    Eastern time.
     
  17. greenberg until the end of the world Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,811
    Okay.


    1. Take a piece of paper. Make a list of your reasons for why you wish to complete the exam. Put that list in a visible spot.

    2. Take another piece of paper. Make a list of the topics you need to study. Mark those that the teacher said are especially important.

    3. Go online. Go to Wikipedia and find the articles for those topics. First, look up those that the teacher said are especially important. Print them. If Wikipedia doesn't have something, check out http://www.sil.org/linguistics/GlossaryOfLinguisticTerms/ or search the web.

    4. Take one article at a time. First read it. have a spare piece of paper with you, and write down questions or ideas that arise in your mind as you read. Then read the article again and underline. Then write a summary at the edge of the article. Make short, structured notes - like mindmaps or lists.

    5. Go to the next article. Repeat the process.

    6. Take breaks: never work for more than two hours at once, take short breaks every 20 or 30 minutes. Stretch, get some fresh air, drink water, eat fruit. Try to get some sleep.

    7. Revise: Take the articles again. Quiz and recall: Ask yourself relevant questions about the topic, and then discuss the answers, as if you were explaining the topic to an audience.

    8. Go to the textbook and look up those topics there. Read, underline, quiz and recall with the textbook.

    9. Revise.

    10. In the future, make use of the advice and resources here:
    http://www.calnewport.com/blog/
    http://www.studygs.net/
    http://www.palgrave.com/skills4study/handytips/essaywriting.asp
    http://www.lingforum.com/forum/

    11. Don't let me catch you here again with such problems!

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  18. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

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    Mrow, at last look it up on Wikipedia and Google. You will probably find enough information to at least pass the exam. Enter any one of those terms as a search term and write for yourself a mini-essay that describes what you read. Or copy and paste your favorite short descriptions to a file, with the URL, which MS Word will do. For example:

    Speech Act Theory

    I copied and pasted this from about half way down the "Speech Act" article. These lines seem to answer the "what is" question best:

    Look up each term on Google, find the information that bests tells you what these things are, then memorize them. Believe that you can memorize them. Use a lot of repetition, take an interest in the material, and focus your attention on it.
     
  19. mrow Unless Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, I guess I'll just do that. I was hoping to actually understand some of this, though, in case it comes up on future exams. But for now it'll do for this exam. Thanks.
     
  20. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

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    5,502
    You're welcome. Good luck with the exams.

    Look at the simplest parts of this. A speech act is saying anything meaningful. The three words that end in "tory" are words for what the speaker intends to say, what he actually says, and what the audience hears, or perceives. In order, illocutory, locutory, and perlocutory. You can use a mnemonic for illocutory and perlocutory because illocutory begins with an "i" like "intends" and perlocutory begins with a "per" like "perceives."

    J. L. Austin's book "How to Do Things With Words" is available at 699 libraries on Worldcat. There is a short review of the book on Austin's Wikipedia entry.

    Most information that you find will have several sources. There are free encyclopedias. Some of them you should do well enough looking them up in the dictionary, too. Fraggle Rocker is right about the sources. They're of more valuable than the articles that they came with.

    I am not an expert but I expect your next exam to be about the work of people like Noam Chomsky, Bill Ayers, and Umberto Eco. You might want to skim ahead after this exam and order some books through interlibrary loan early. Plus, you did a really good thing by identifying key terms that you have to deal with. You have time to get familiar with those now, and you need to do the same thing to prepare for the finals (I am presuming that this is midterm and finals are in December.) Someone out there should have a formula for this, but the beginnings would include identifying key words and people in the book, and going to encyclopedias, dictionaries, books in the library, and online sources to learn about them. Then put the information together in a way that makes sense to you.

    Considering the subject of the course, BSing your way through the exam seems fitting.

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