Introduction to Sociolinguistics
In what way BBI 3204 Introduction to Sociolinguistics has help me to understand society and its relationship with language
The question that you pose to me was what has this course made me aware of society and its relationship with language. I feel that this question is a more of general, application and personal tone. Therefore I am going to write about my experience and my understanding in relation to this course.
First of all, I understand that sociolinguistic is the study about language in connection to society. How do I define language? I see language as a tool. It serves a range of functions. Language is also like a vehicle or a medium in human interaction. Society means a community of people living in a particular country or region and having shared customs, laws, organizations and etc. Then what is the relationship between society and language? In my opinion, when people use language to communicate, the language itself has become part of society. There are many possibilities about the relationship between language and society. The possibilities are society influences language, or language influences society, or society and language influence each other or no influence
In continuation of my story, I became a teacher and I was posted to teach in a chinese school in Klang. For example, the typical Chinese, unable to roll their tongues will pronounce "lari" as "lali". When I speak to my grand-aunt, I have to be conscious of her salutation and the manner of my conversation that is extremely politeness. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics. There are advantage and disadvantage situations I am facing. The pupils took the initiative to speak English with me as I refuse to speak to them in chinese. This is when I tend to code-switch in English or standard Malay. In addition, when I converse with my elders in Peranakan I have to be aware of their status, power and solidarity. But I do not speak a single word of Chinese nor can I even write a single Chinese character. When I went to that school, most of the pupils and some teachers (even the Headmaster!) thought that I am a Malay or Muslim just because I cannot speak chinese. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics. I am experiencing language loss here so do most of the younger generation of my culture. As an example, my name reflects that I am a Chinese.