Sociolinguistics is the branch of linguistics that studies language in use, including the principles a speaker uses to choose the appropriate language for each social context. Topics of study include:

  • language and social class, language and social networks, language and age, language and gender, language and identity
  • regional dialects 
  • pidgin and creole languages
  • code-switching between dialects or languages
  • language styles—formal, informal, and specialized
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