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Article
Making Pittsburghese: Communication technology, expertise, and the discursive construction of a regional dialect
Language and Communication (2011)
  • Barbara Johnstone, Carnegie Mellon University
Abstract

This paper explores how changing technologies for broadcast communication shape the expertise that comes into play in the discursive construction of a regional dialect in public interaction that includes both institutionally-sanctioned experts like linguists and laypeople with other sources of expertise. Based on an analysis of discourse about Pittsburgh speech, or “Pittsburghese,” in print newspapers, a website, an online discussion board, and a Wikipedia entry, it is argued that both scholars interested in the historical process of language-making and those interested in interaction with the public on the topic of non-standard varieties can benefit from thinking about the role of technology in determining whose voices are heard when.

Keywords
  • dialect,
  • discourse,
  • expertise,
  • Pittsburgh,
  • technology
Publication Date
2011
Publisher Statement
NOTICE: This is the author’s version of a work accepted for publication by Elsevier. Changes resulting from the publishing process, including peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting and other quality control mechanisms, may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication.
Citation Information
Johnstone, B. Making Pittsburghese: Communication technology, expertise, and the discursive construction of a regional dialect. Lang. Commun. (2010), doi:10.1016/j.langcom.2010.08.010