Language and Social Change in Java: Linguistic Reflexes of Modernization in a Traditional Royal Polity
J. Joseph Errington
Errington explores linguistic evidence of social change among the traditional priyayi elite of Surakarta in south-central Java. Employing data from texts, interviews, observed speech, and questionnaires, he shows a progressive leveling in the language used to denote traditional status differences, and he demonstrates how perceptions of speech styles reflect etiquette and the views of the users.
Errington suggests that a reciprocal assimilation process changes the way members of Java’s traditional elite deal with each other in a modern urban milieu. The argument and the material on which it is based will be of interest to historians, linguists, anthropologists and
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