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This volume presents a ground-breaking overview of the interconnections between socio-cultural reality and language practices, by looking at the different ways in which social roles are performed, maintained, adopted and assigned through linguistic means. The introductory chapter discusses and evaluates different theoretical approaches to the question, and the eight articles by leading scholars in the field offer a multiplicity of methodological and theoretical approaches to the description and interpretation of social roles as expressed in a variety of texts from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. While the specific period covered is Late Modern English, the theoretical insights offered will be of interest to any linguist interested in sociolinguistics, pragmatics and the history of English, as well as scholars in the social sciences and social history interested in the concept and realisation of roles.
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