Introduction to Quantitative Analysis of Linguistic Survey Data: An Atlas by the Numbers

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William A. Kretzschmar Jr. & Edgar W. Schneider

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  • Back Matter
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  • Empirical Linguistics Series

    William A. Kretzschmar, Jr., Series Editor

    Books in this series will bring serious attention to the study of empirical data (e.g., linguistic corpora, discourse analysis, dialectology, and sociolinguistics). Every volume will accept the actual utterances of real people as the basis for study. Empirical Linguistics fully embraces the “linguistics of speech,” showcases applications of empirical methods, and includes textbooks that present the methods of empirical linguistics.

    Forthcoming titles include

    • Advanced Computer and Statistical Techniques in Linguistics
      • Robert Berdan
    • History of English: Facts and Figures
      • Manfred Gorlach
    • Dimensions of American English
      • William A. Kretzschmar, Jr.
    • Dynamics of a Sociolinguistic System
      • Michael Miller and Ronald Butters
    • Introduction to English Corpus Linguistics
      • Charles Meyer
    • Legitimate and Illegitimate English
      • Salikoko Mufwene
    • Handbook of Perceptual Dialectology
      • Dennis Preston

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    List of Tables

    List of Figures

    • Figure 3.1. List Manuscript Page, 17.3, pail55
    • Figure 3.2. Field Record Page (17) by Guy Lowman for PA1G! (Philadelphia) 57
    • Figure 3.3. LAMSAS Proof Printout, L6#2, thunderstorm62
    • Figure 3.4. Dates of LAMSAS Interviews 67
    • Figure 3.5. Age Structure of Informants 70
    • Figure 3.6. Plot for gust, thunder gust ‘thunderstorm’ (Macintosh, LAMSASplot program) 71
    • Figure 3.7. Plot of All LAMSAS Localities (MapInfo for Windows) 72
    • Figure 3.8. LAMSAS Sector Grid 74
    • Figure 3.9. CROSSTAB for L5#4, Responses Containing break, Type by Region 82
    • Figure 3.10. CROSSTAB of Average Age for L5#4, Responses Containing break, Type by Education 83
    • Figure 4.1. SPSS/PC+ CROSSTAB of dog iron, with Chi-Square Statistic 96
    • Figure 5.1. Overall Number of Informants by Category 105
    • Figure 5.2. Regional and Social Distribution of clearing106
    • Figure 5.3. Regional and Social Distribution of clearing off108
    • Figure 5.4. Regional and Social Distribution of clearing up110
    • Figure 5.5. Regional and Social Distribution of fairing off111
    • Figure 5.6. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with clear112
    • Figure 5.7. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with fair114
    • Figure 5.8. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with break115
    • Figure 5.9. Regional and Social Distribution of the Particle off117
    • Figure 5.10. Regional and Social Distribution of the Particle up118
    • Figure 5.11. Regional and Social Distribution of the Particle away119
    • Figure 5.12. Regional and Social Distribution Without a Particle (“zero”) 121
    • Figure 5.13. Univariate Statistics from Discriminant Analysis Procedure, break126
    • Figure 5.14. Partial MAKECELL Display for clearing off133
    • Figure 5.15. Partial Display of IVARB Output, clearing off, One-Level 134
    • Figure 5.16. Partial Display of IVARB Output, clearing off, Step-Up/Step-Down 135
    • Figure 5.17. Regional and Social Distribution of cow lot138
    • Figure 5.18. Regional and Social Distribution of cow pen139
    • Figure 5.19. Regional and Social Distribution of cuppin141
    • Figure 5.20. Regional and Social Distribution of milk gap142
    • Figure 5.21. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with pound144
    • Figure 5.22. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with yard145
    • Figure 5.23. Regional and Social Distribution of Lexical Types with lot146

    Series Editor's Introduction

    This volume is the first in the Sage Empirical Linguistics Series. It is a fitting volume to set the pattern for the series, for the hallmark of books in the series will be serious attention to empirical data, as here to survey research. Other books may take a somewhat different approach to “empirical data”—linguistic corpora, discourse, case studies—but every volume will accept the actual utterances of real people as the basis for study. In his Course in General Linguistics (as translated by Roy Harris, 1986, La Salle, IL: Open Court Classics), Ferdinand de Saussure distinguished what he called the “linguistics of speech” from linguistics proper, which for Saussure was the “science of linguistic structure” (18–20). This series begins with the “linguistics of speech.”

    Saussure's strict dichotomy between speech and linguistic structure, parole and langue, has always had clay feet because it has always been necessary “to draw upon what the study of speech can tell us” (20). Nobody can dispense entirely with the empirical, because before we get to structure we have to consult individual speakers about what they say (by noticing what they say, in more or less systematic ways), or to ask them for their judgments of the grammatically of examples of speech. The Empirical Linguistics Series fully embraces the “linguistics of speech,” whereas many another linguistic forum admits as little empirical evidence as possible, preferring discussions that move as quickly as possible to linguistic structure.

    Empirical linguists are not slow, not merely “dull cataloguers of data” as Robert Lees once wrote (see Chapter 1, this volume); they just prefer the careful methods of modern empirical science to reliance on the more romantic leaps of insight preferred by Lees. The series will showcase applications of such methods, and will also include textbooks that present the methods and results of different aspects of empirical linguistics. This inaugural volume proposes careful counting and statistical analysis of questionnaire data from survey research, as exemplified throughout by reference to the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States, still the largest single survey of its type. Collectively, the books of the series will build procedures for use of evidence in empirical linguistic study. Such procedures begin with detailed specification of where evidence comes from, how it is collected, and how it is categorized, and, as shown in this volume, these matters crucially affect the conclusions that can reasonably be drawn from particular evidence.

    Empirical linguistic data cannot rise to achieve the status of evidence unless it is incorporated in an argument, unless it is applied to a purpose. One such goal is a better understanding of Saussure's linguistic structure, of how we might best think of language and linguistic structure, and of how language and linguistic structure work from the point of view of what people say. Another goal of linguistic evidence is to support arguments about the people who use a language, for instance their psychology or their cultural contexts. The Empirical Linguistics Series will not ignore social factors, as Saussure preferred to ignore them “for present purposes” (201). The Empirical Linguistics Series fully embraces the different purposes of the “linguistics of speech” as well as empirical study of speech itself.

    William A.Kretzschmar, Jr., University of Georgia

    Acknowledgments

    We would like to thank the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, which awarded Edgar Schneider a Heisenberg grant to support his stay in Athens in 1988–89, and the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, whose grants to LAMSAS have provided equipment, materials, and research time for the work described here. We would also like to thank several anonymous readers for their suggestions, as well as the staff of the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States, especially Ellen Johnson and Rafal Konopka, for their help in making this volume possible.

  • Appendix: Data Listing, Clearing Up

    The following listing offers all of the data from the LAMSAS table for clearing up (page 5, line 4). The first column, serial, contains the serial number of each informant. The second column is informid, which contains an older numbering system which includes a two-letter state abbreviation; it is included here for easier navigation among the responses. Then come the two data columns, item and phnitem, containing the informant's response in standard spelling and in phonetics, respectively. Next is dbtflag, which signals whether the response should for any reason be considered doubtful. Next come the codes for comments in the comnt column. Finally comes comtext, reserved for narrative comments. Long lines are broken as convenient for publication, either to accommodate long item entries or comments, but the order of columns is maintained.

    Full information about the LAMSAS questionnaire, phonetics, methods, and informants may be found in Kretzschmar et al. 1993. This file, and all other completed and proofread data files for LAMSAS, are available via gopher and WWW at the Linguistic Atlas electronic archive (http://hyde.park.uga.edu). The Linguistic Atlas electronic archive also contains programs and materials useful for viewing and analysis of LAMSAS data, and data, programs, and materials for other linguistic atlases besides LAMSAS.

    The value of this data listing is not primarily to enable separate counting of linguistic forms by readers, but to offer readers an appreciation of how various the data actually is.

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    About the Authors

    Willliam A. Kretzschmar, Jr., is Professor of English and Linguistics and Director of the Linguistics Program at the University of Georgia, where he teaches courses in English Language studies and medieval literature. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States and of the Linguistic Atlas of the North-Central States; he is the custodian of research materials for a number of other Linguistic Atlas surveys archived at the University of Georgia, many of which are also posted on an electronic archive. He edits the Journal of English Linguistics and has published widely on language variation and medieval literature. His Handbook of the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States (with other Atlas staff members) was published in 1993. His Oxford Concise Dictionary of Pronunciation (with Clive Upton and Rafal Konopka) is in press; its transcriptions of British and American English will form the basis for pronunciation entries in the next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.

    Edgar W. Schneider is Professor of English Linguistics at the University of Regensburg, Germany. He previously was Assistant Professor in Bamberg, Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Georgia in 1988–89, and Full Professor at the Free University of Berlin. He received his Ph.D. in 1981 from the University of Bamberg, Germany. A revised translation of his dissertation, a linguistic analysis of the WPA ex-slave narratives, appeared in the United States in 1989 (American Earlier Black English). He has taught, lectured, and published widely on a variety of topics in English linguistics, including syntax, semantics, lexis, word formation, corpus linguistics, and the history of the language. His primary research interest lies in the dialectology and sociolinguistics of varieties of English, in particular American English, the historical evolution of nonstandard varieties, and the dynamic fuzziness observable in these processes. Further book publications include a two-volume study of the lexical semantics of English mental verbs (in German, 1988), two coauthored bibliographies of varieties of English (1984, 1993), and an edited volume with samples of current research in American English (Focus on the USA, 1996).


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