Review: Osnabrücker Beiträge zur Sprachtheorie – Heft 62: Sprechalter (March 2001) [Osnabruecker Contributions to Language Theory—Special Issue No. 62: Speech Age"]. Edited by Svenja Sachweh & Joachim Gessinger

Günter Mey


The six contributions, collected in this special issue on "speech age," point out several perspectives from which to discuss the relation between age and language. Regarding "speech age," childhood and "symmetrical child relations" are discussed; in addition "asymmetrical" communication between adults and children is discussed. For the "speech age," an overview is given of adolescents' "language usage." Additionally, specific interaction practices among young males—called "Dissen" (derived from "disrespect," it might be translated as "ignoring")—are analyzed. Regarding the "speech age" of elderly people, some more general accesses are described in order to make age the subject of linguistic investigations. Findings on communication strategies of elderly people are reported. The issue does not provide a comprehensive overview over "age and language." To realize this an extended volume would have been necessary. Such a future volume should also include additional disciplinary perspectives besides the linguistic focus (outlined in the issue); e.g. sociological and psychological knowledge would be helpful to secure a closer understanding of language and age. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0204216


language development; communication strategies; childhood; adolescence; elderly people


Copyright (c) 2002 Günter Mey

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