Variation in Australian English: The Sociolects of Sydney
Barbara Horvath's study of the English spoken in Sydney is an important and timely contribution to our knowledge about varieties of English in the world and about variation in urban dialects in particular. It is the first large-scale work to apply recent advances in sociolinguistic theory and methodology to Australian English, and to take account of the complex social changes resulting from immigration that are taking place in Australia's urban population. The study is based on a survey of Sydneysiders of Anglo-Celtic, Greek and Italian background, and is significant not only for the variety of techniques employed in the sociolinguistic analysis, but also for the linguistic variables considered. Dr Horvath's quantitative analysis of intonation and text is a particularly welcome innovation. The volume concludes with an attempt to return to an integrated view of dialect based on co-occuring linguistic features.