Monday, August 25, 2008

The Difference Between Code-Switching and Diglossia

The term code-switching is used when examining how people speak in different situations. Code is thought of as a more neutral way of expressing dialect and there are generally thought to be two codes, a prestige code and an everyday code. The term diglossia is also used to describe a person’s ability to switch from one dialect or code to another. The subtle difference between code-switching and diglossia is that diglossia is thought to be a more intentional changing of dialect due to situation and code-switching is perceived as a more subconscious change.

1 comment:

J.A.G. said...

Good to know, although I have a hard time figuring out which I'm doing when my dialect changes. I find that I often change between several dialects based upon the dialect of the person I'm speaking to. I'm aware of instances where conscious thought entered into the switch, but in many cases it seems to be subconscious.

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