So you may wonder: Why? Why study dialects, why learn about them? What is so important about dialect? There are actually quite a few reasons.
Speakers of a language can make observations and judgements based on the dialect someone uses of that particular language. However, these observations and judgements may be distorted and inaccurate due to being based on incorrect assumptions rather than actual fact.
Learning about and understanding dialects is important to avoiding negative bias and judgement about the dialects of oneself and others. It’s best to be passing judgements or making assumptions from an informed perspective, at least.
OKAY, SO IS THAT THE ONLY REASON WHY? NO
History & Culture
Dialects can actually reveal a lot about a person, especially if one understands dialects and can make the correct inferences based on the information revealed. Dialects are important to study because they can provide more information on the history of certain people. They can also reveal cultural backgrounds!
Method of Preservation
Not only can dialects determine or reveal things about the past, but they can also preserve things for the future! Studies have shown how cultural and historical heritage of certain groups can be maintained through the dialects they speak.
Self or Group Awareness
Dialects have also been found to be considered as integral parts of people’s identities and sense of place. Many people have close knit communities that are centered around their shared use of a dialect, and they may identify closely with this certain form of language.
On a more theoretically based level, dialects can be studied to understand the cognitive processes of groups of people. It can also be used to determine how language has changed over time.
While not many people stop to think about dialects, or their importance, they have many valuable contributions to the study of language as a whole and even society! Being more informed about dialects can lessen, and eventually help fully alleviate, bias and negative judgement based on language. The study of dialects can also give insight to the histories and culture of different groups, not only revealing things about the past but also helping preserve those traditions and cultures far into the future. Dialects are also provide important sense of identity and place for a lot of people.
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Were you aware that dialects were so important? Do you know of any other advantages that the study or awareness of dialects can have on individuals and society as a whole? Are there parts of your history, culture, identity, or sense of place invested in your own dialect?Follow my blog with Bloglovin