The intention of the present volume is to unite the research of a range of scholars who have been working on features of non-standard, vernacular English which show an areal distribution, i.e. which cluster geographically across the world. Features common to an area can be due to (i) shared dialect input, (ii) common but separate innovations after settlement, or (iii) area-internal diffusion from one variety to another and/or others. The relative weighting of these factors is an important topic in the book and is a key focus in the 17 chapters. The book is divided into two large blocks, the first one consisting of case studies (8 chapters) and the second with features complexes (9 chapters). The former look at major anglophone locations from an areal perspective while the latter examine linguistic categories and features with a view to determine whether these could be areally based or not.
Raymond Hickey, Universität Duisburg-Essen, Germany.
"In sum, ‘Areal features of the Anglophone world’ achieves its goal of applying “areal considerations in the analysis of change in varieties of English … (for) a better understanding of the configurations found throughout the Anglophone world” (p. 13). It is recommended for linguists and linguistic anthropologists working in the fields of dialectology, variation, language contact and change, and sociolinguistic research on “non-traditional” or less-studied varieties. While less suitable for non-specialist readers, it will be extremely useful to scholars seeking an informative and thought-provoking resource on the distributional and structural aspects of English dialects, and to those engaging with a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to areal processes."Amelia Tseng in: Linguist List 24.3127