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Folia Linguistica

Acta Societatis Linguisticae Europaeae

Editor-in-Chief: Fischer, Olga / Norde, Muriel

Folia Linguistica
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Volume 44, Issue 2


The role of age in Austrians' perceptions of the frequency of use and likeability of lexical Teutonisms and Austriacisms

James Pfrehm
Published Online: 2010-12-08 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/flin.2010.016

The article explores whether, and to what extent, there is empirical support for the folk linguistic belief, variously expressed by adult native speakers of German in Eastern Austria, that younger Austrians harbor more sympathetic attitudes toward the German variety and more negative attitudes toward the Austrian variety of the German language. Quantitative data were gathered through a questionnaire asking 115 Austrian participants to rate Austrian Standard German (ASG) and German Standard German (GSG) words in terms of frequency of use and likeability. Analyses of the data led to the conclusion that while between-group comparisons indicate that the older Austrians use and like the ASG words more, and the GSG words less, than their younger compatriots, within-group comparisons reveal that the youngest Austrians prefer the ASG words to the GSG words. By demonstrating that popular judgments about language are less simple than they appear on the surface, the article demonstrates the value of gathering empirical data to test these judgments.

Keywords:: Austrian German; dialectology; perceptual dialectology; Austrian national variety; folk linguistics

About the article

Received: 2009-07-18

: 2009-09-15

Revised: 2010-02-07

Accepted: 2010-02-27

Published Online: 2010-12-08

Published in Print: 2010-12-01

Citation Information: Folia Linguistica, Volume 44, Issue 2, Pages 439–470, ISSN (Online) 1614-7308, ISSN (Print) 0165-4004, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/flin.2010.016.

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