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Jill Robbins, Chair 150 W 21st Street, Stop B3700, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4936

Spring 2007

SPN 345L • Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
47825 MWF
9:00 AM-10:00 AM
MEZ 1.216

Course Description

The course presents an overview of linguistic tools and their application to major forms of linguistic variation in Spanish. We apply these tools to specific circumstances favoring variation from ideal or standardized usage. All topics are keyed to exercises and activities for practice in or out of class. They also match a set of supplementary readings focusing on present-day linguistic developments in Spain and some other countries. Students will be asked to write two research papers based on the corresponding topics. Part I: (A) Linguistic tools and topics: Spanish as a world language; language and linguistics; description of the sounds of language in general (phonetics) and of Spanish in particular (phonology). (B) Topics in variation: (1) social variation, with such topics as the speech community, forms of address, bilingualism and diglossia; (2) regional variation, focusing on linguistic (mainly phonological) traits associated with certain countries or geographical areas of Spain and the Americas. Part II (A) Linguistic tools and topics: morphology, which deals with forms and processes that create vocabulary; and syntax, the organization of patterns and processes that generate sentences. There is overlap between morphology and syntax, hence the term "morphosyntax". We will address syntax in general and the syntax of particular structures in Spanish. (B) Topics in variation: (1) contextual variation reflected in interpersonal discourse and in the pragmatics of such communication. All levels of language may be involved. (2) variation related to ongoing contact with other languages, including English in the U.S; codeswitching and contact vernaculars.. There are two texts. Azevedo's Introducciñn a la lingüëstica espaïola and the accompanying Workbook provide abundant practice in its contents relating to the above. It is not meant to be covered exhaustively in class but to serve as a guide to the basic tools needed for the study of these and other aspects of Spanish. The coverage of Stewarts The Spanish Language Today closely matches the content of the Azevedo text in a more informal way and provides ample material for the two research papers.

Grading Policy

5 two-part quizzes 50% 2 research papers (20% each) 40% Participation and attendance 10%


Milton Azevedo, Introducciñn a la lingüëstica espaïola & Workbook Miranda Stewart, The Spanish Language Today Supplementary textual and audiovisual materials


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