Code Switching in Society as the Product of Linguistics

Topics: Multilingualism, Language, Second language Pages: 6 (1896 words) Published: April 7, 2013
By: Agnechia Friska Rivalny/ 126332055


In the society, we always interact with other people around us. When people interact with others at anytime and anywhere they must use a language. Without a language, people will find some troubles when they do their activities and toward the others. There is no people or society without a language. The role of a language among the people in this life is very crucial. The study of linguistics reveals that language and society cannot be separated to be investigated. It develops into sociolinguistics or the sociology of language. Fishman (in Chaer and Agustina, 2004:3) says that, ‘sociolinguistics is the study of the characteristics of language varieties, the characteristics of their functions, and the characteristics of the speaker as these three constantly interact, change and change one another within a speech community”. In addition, Holmes (2001:1) says that sociolinguistics is concerned with the relationship between language and the context in which it is used. The relationship between language and the context in society is not only natural, but common. We use language acccording to the context in each society. Examining the way people use language in different social contexts provides a wealth information about the way language works, as well as about the social relationships in a community, and the way people signal aspects of their social identity through the language. Sociolinguistics actually does not discuss a structure of a language, but it focuses on how a language is used, so it could play its function well. From this statement, we can get a description that people also face language conflicts before sociolinguistics appears. So it is clear now that the role of sociolinguistics is to manage a language as its functions in society, or in other words sociolinguistics deals with a language as means of communication.

Code Switching in Society as The Product of Linguistics

In everyday interaction, people usually choose different codes in different situation. They may choose a particular code or variety because it makes them easier to discuss a particular topic, regardless where they are speaking. When talking about work or school at home, for instance, they may use the language that is related to those fields rather than the language used in daily language communication at home. A code is a system that is used by people to communicate with each other. When people want to talk each other, they have to choose a particular code to express their feeling. According to Stockwell (2002:8-9), a code is “a symbol of nationalism that is used by people to speak or communicate in a particular language, or dialect, or register, or accent, or style on different occasions and for different purposes.” Similarly, Ronald Wardaugh (1986:101) also maintains that a code can be defined as “a system used for communication between two or more parties used on any occasions.” When two or more people communicate with each other in speech, we can call the system of communication that they employ a code. Therefore, people are usually required to select a particular code whenever they choose to speak, and they may also decide to switch from one code to another or to mix codes, sometimes in very short utterances and it means to create a code. Hoffman (1991:112) shows many types of code switching and code mixing based on the juncture or the scope of switching where languages take place. Those are inter-sentential switching, emblematic switching, and establishing continuity with the previous speaker. Each type will be describe bellow:

Types of code switching
1. Inter-sentential...
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