Volume 8, Issue 7 (2018)                   JCLL 2018, 8(7): 291-314 | Back to browse issues page

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Saffar Moghaddam A, Rostambeik Tafreshi A. A Study of Persian Speakers’ Perception of Stylistic Variation in Persian Language. JCLL. 2018; 8 (7) :291-314
URL: http://journals.modares.ac.ir/article-14-5910-en.html
1- Professor of Linguistics in Institute for humanities and cultural studies
2- Assistant professor, Linguistics Department, Institute for Humanities and Cultural Studies
Abstract:   (687 Views)
Focusing on Persian language continuum of styles, this research aims at studying the stylistic variation of Persian language according to the native speakers’ judgment of the formality of some Persian sentences that are related semantically, and conveys the same proposition, but considered to be different regarding the number of formal or informal and colloquial words, phrases, and syntactic features in them. Therefore, this research is categorized as a research in perceptual dialectology. The main goal is to analyze the relation between the lexical and structural features of formality with the native speakers’ perception of the degree of formality of the sentences.The main questions this research tries to answer are as follows: Is it possible to define the degree of formality of a sentence according to the linguistic features? And, which phonetic, lexical and structural features exert more influence on Persian speakers’ judgments?
 The research hypotheses are as follows: It is possible to define the degree of formality according to some linguistic features like how close the pronunciation of a word is to standard language, the use of some formal or informal words and expressions. And, the use of some lexical items and expressions or taboo words affects the native speakers’ judgment more than other features.
 A researcher-made questionnaire consisting of 15 sentences which communicate the same proposition was used for gathering data on speakers’ judgments. Informants were 70 men and women in three different age-groups, 20-30 (n=35), 30-40 (n= 20)and 40-50 (n=15) who analyzed and graded the sentences, according to the degree of formality, on a continuum from the most to the least formal, based on their intuition. A descriptive – analytic method was used to analyze the data quantitatively and qualitatively. The topic and theoretical frame work of the research are the innovative features of the study.
The results show that it is possible to measure the approximate degree of formality of a sentence by counting the stylistically marked linguistic features. Nevertheless, the speaker’s judgment on the degree of formality does not necessarily depend on the number of these features, and some lexical items and terms that are marked due to observing politeness will affect their judgment. In general, lexical choices and some phonetic changes seem to have more influence on the speakers’ judgments than structural features.
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Article Type: Research Paper | Subject: Linguistics
Received: 2017/02/26 | Accepted: 2017/06/14 | Published: 2018/02/20

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