Standards, Standardization, and English Linguistic History
University of Notre Dame / Fulbright professor, UiO
Thursday 24 April 2014 at 14.15, PAM 489
Grammars and textbooks characteristically treat the history of the standardization of English as not only unswerving progress from the medieval to the modern periods but also a story identical to that of the history of English itself. In fact, the medieval varieties that have been cited as incipient standards poorly justify the model of the “triumph of English.” In this paper I first survey the various suggested medieval standards of English. I then consider their claims to be standards, and, finally, I address the theoretical implications not simply of medieval standards but of our interest in them.