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122221 SE Linguistics Seminar / BA Paper (2021S)


11.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 12 - Anglistik
Prüfungsimmanente Lehrveranstaltung


Hinweis: Ihr Anmeldezeitpunkt innerhalb der Frist hat keine Auswirkungen auf die Platzvergabe (kein "first come, first served").


max. 18 Teilnehmer*innen
Sprache: Englisch



Vorläufig online
Freitag 14:15-15:45
Beginn: 19.03.2021


Ziele, Inhalte und Methode der Lehrveranstaltung

In the medieval period, until 1603, it can be convincingly claimed that Scots (what linguists nowadays refer to as Middle Scots) was a fully-fledged linguistic system, the language of an independent nation state, which functioned quite independently of Middle English. After the Union of the Crowns in 1603, followed by the Union of Parliaments in 1707, Scots underwent a process of asymmetrical convergence with English, with (by now relatively standardized) English gradually becoming the ‘high’ language for all official purposes. Scots remained a vigorous spoken tongue, the vehicle of a rich folk culture. However, in the eighteenth century Scots came to be revived as a literary language and that literary register has been copiously and richly sustained right up to the present day. It was as a literary language that Scots almost certainly gained recognition in 2001 under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. Scots accents, however, have retained their separateness of system, accompanying the imported standardised English as well as local dialect or folk speech. For one leading authority, Scots has been “more than a dialect but less than a language”. For another it is a Halbsprache. Thus, in the present-day, some people consider that they still speak some variety of traditional Scots, but which has become influenced or bound up with standard English in written registers and formal spoken discourse situations. For others, it is Scottish English that they both speak and write, albeit to varying degrees with substratal influences from traditional Scots.
Thus the status of Scots throughout its development and right up to the present day will be a recurrent theme of this seminar. As evidence for its status, a great many literary and also non-literary texts as well as corpora and online material will be used. An abiding theme will be the identification of the languageness or dialecticity of Scots.

The seminar will comprise three parts:
1. The morpho-syntax and discourse-pragmatics of Scots/Scottish English. This will be studied by using a range of recent dramatic texts. Each student will be allocated a particular play, in an electronic version. In one class, students will read aloud excerpts from their play, to get an initial feeling for spoken Scots.
2. The lexis of traditional spoken Scots. This will be studied on the basis of the data used for individual thematic maps which were published in _The Linguistic Atlas of Scotland_.
3. The tradition of poetry of Scots. This will be studied on the basis of well-known poems in Scots from different periods from the medieval period to the present day.

Art der Leistungskontrolle und erlaubte Hilfsmittel

The seminar will look at each topic in depth, using real data, and will be based around extensive weekly homework analysis. These exercises will engage you with Scots as well as prepare you for your choice of topic and its treatment in the BA assignment.

Mindestanforderungen und Beurteilungsmaßstab


3 presentations (with written material) each worth 15% each
BA assignment arising from one of them worth 55%


The set books will be _The Edinburgh Companion to Scots_, edited by John Corbett, J. Derrick McClure & Jane Stuart-Smith (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2003),
Robert McColl Millar, _Modern Scots: An Analytical Survey_ (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2018).
Further reading will be recommended topic by topic. There will be regular home work.

Zuordnung im Vorlesungsverzeichnis

Studium: BA 612
Code/Modul: BA06.2
Lehrinhalt: 12-2222

Letzte Änderung: Mi 21.04.2021 11:26