Publisher's Summary

Language is not a passive means of communication. In fact, it's the active process through which we construct societies, and, within them, our own social lives and realities. Language - as we use it in our day-to-day interactions - fundamentally shapes our experience, our thinking, our perceptions, and the very social systems within which our lives unfold.
Nowhere is the social role of language revealed more clearly than in the fascinating field of sociolinguistics. Among many eye-opening perspectives, the work of sociolinguistics points out that:

Language is strong social capital, and our linguistic choices carry both costs and benefits we rarely consider.
Our identity is strongly tied to the speech we use and our perceptions of the speech we hear.
Our children are raised, our relationships are made, and our careers succeed, in large part, through how we use language.
Language embodies a worldview: Your linguistic system reflects and affects the way you organize and understand the world around you.
In these 24 thought-provoking lectures, you'll investigate how social differences based on factors such as region, class, ethnicity, occupation, gender, and age are inseparable from language differences. Further, you'll explore how these linguistic differences arise, and how they both reflect and generate our social systems. You'll look at the remarkable ways in which our society is a reflection of our language, how differences in the way people use language create differences in society, how people construct and define social contexts by their language use, and ultimately why our speech reveals so much about us. Join a brilliantly insightful sociolinguist and teacher in a compelling inquiry that sheds light on how our linguistic choices play a determining role in every aspect of our lives.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.
©2014 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2014 The Great Courses
Show More Show Less

Regular price: $50.71

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – love a book or swap it for free
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $16.45/month
Select or add a new payment method

Buy Now with 1 Credit

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Buy Now for $50.71

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Greg on 17-06-2018

Terrible, terrible humour which ruins it.

Unlike others reviewing Fridland's lecture I think her knowledge and how she imparts her subject matter is pretty good. But I'm sorry Valerie, your jokes are not funny. One or two here and there might be cute but there's a corny awkward distraction every few minutes. I have most of the Great Courses on linguistics and language and I re-listen to them (except Anne Curzan for similar reasons) with some regularity. I thought I'd give Fridland another go after a year of abstaining but soon into the lecture I was squirming and remembered why I don't listen to it. However, when she stays on track I think she's good. I would buy another title from her if it was guaranteed to be joke free. They are that bad.

Read More Hide me
See all Reviews

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By R.B. on 08-04-2015

Like nails on a chalkboard

Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor Valerie Fridland?

Yes but not if Mrs Fridland narrates it. One of the other reviewers pointed out how annoying her voice is and I have to agree. It's shrill, weirdly chipper,and just not comfortable to listen to for more than a few minutes.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You?

I zoned out a lot during this audio book, something that very rarely happens. Mrs Fridland just didn't keep me interested all that long. The few points I do remember were interesting though.

What didn’t you like about Professor Valerie Fridland’s performance?

She has a high pitched voice, too shrill. Not pleasant.

Was Language and Society: What Your Speech Says About You worth the listening time?

I didn't retain a lot of the concepts. This might be a lecture better ingested from a written source material.

Any additional comments?

The content is interesting but I just couldn't finish it. Mrs Fridland's voice and fact that visualizing language-based concepts is hard make this for a fairly tough audio book to get through.

Read More Hide me

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Noah Lugeons on 08-06-2016

Worst Great Courses I've Heard

Painful attempts at humor, sudden yelling, and a subtitle so inaacurate I'd call it deceptive.

Read More Hide me

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

See all Reviews

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By lorraine on 11-05-2015

Narration far too fast

Narration was far too fast to hear clearly and without pauses, therefore no time to consider what had been discussed.

Read More Hide me

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By DAVID on 18-03-2018

Lecturer's delivery is absolutely awful

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A lecturer who did not do the following: make silly, immature jokes as asides during presentation, speak too rapidly, trip over their words, and inexplicably suddenly raise the volume of delivery

Would you ever listen to anything by The Great Courses again?

Absolutely - I'm delighted to have found the Great Courses. This has been my first experience of a course being completely ruined by the style of delivery

Who might you have cast as narrator instead of Professor Valerie Fridland?

Professor Gary K. Wolfe, who narrates 'How Great Science Fiction Works' has the perfect style of delivery

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Anger, annoyance, frustration

Any additional comments?

I was really surprised at how this series made it into the Great Courses.

Read More Hide me
See all Reviews