Монологи на английском языке с текстом и переводом. №81. Тема: Лингвистика, или языковедение.

Welcome to Linguistics 101. I'm happy to see you all here in this class! Obviously this is your first class in linguistics, so you may not be too familiar with this field of study. For that reason, I would like to give you an introduction to linguistics. Mainly, I would like to explain to you what the field of linguistics is about. The basic idea behind linguistics is to study language. In a way, that probably seems like a pretty simple idea, right?
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Actually, studying language has many aspects. That is, there are many different areas of language that we can study. Let me tell you about a few of the popular areas of linguistics. As you continue taking linguistics classes, you can decide which you like best. Normally, linguists specialize in only one or two areas. One very popular area in linguistics is called historical linguistics.
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Historical linguistics is one of the oldest areas in the field. In this area, linguists try to figure out what language was like a long time ago. For example, what was English like when it was first used? To do this, historical linguists study very old written documents. Then, they compare the old documents to newer writings. By doing this type of comparison, a historical linguist can piece together how languages change over time.
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Another popular field of study in linguistics is called applied linguistics. This area has this name because results of studies are applied to people. One popular subfield of applied linguistics is concerned with language learning. For example, how does a person learn a second language? For a second language learner, what is useful in the learning process?
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What types of classroom exercises can be done to help the learner? What types of exercises don't help? Linguists do research to try and answer these questions. The results of these investigations are then applied to classroom teaching. Then, we have contextual linguistics. This area, contextual linguistics, is very broad. That is, many different subfields fall under the rubric of contextual linguistics.
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The basic idea is to see how language interacts with other fields, like sociology. This area is called sociolinguistics. In sociolinguistics, a researcher wants to know how language interacts with a given society. For example, how do people speak when they are talking to friends compared to when they talk to professors? Are there differences in the styles of speech in both formal and informal situations?
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Besides speaking differently in these formal or informal situations, are there differences between how men and women speak? These differences between men and women are called gender differences. There are many, many more areas of study in linguistics. Today, we could only talk about the areas of historical linguistics, applied linguistics, and contextual linguistics. In the next class, we will have a chance to examine each subfield in depth. In addition, we will look at areas of linguistics I didn't touch on today.
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