Human Ecology

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 317–332 | Cite as

Social variation in Shoshoni phonology: An ecological interpretation

  • Richley H. Crapo
  • Bryan R. Spykerman


Under certain environmental and social conditions, intensive dialect borrowing can yield situations in which alternate phonemes may occur with such frequency in items elicited within a single speech community as to give the appearance of free variation. Such “social variation,” in which members of a single speech community utilize different reflexes of the same historic phoneme within their own vocabulary — thereby creating a superficial impression of free variation within the community — occurs within Shoshoni phonology.

Key words

Shoshoni dialectology sociolinguistics 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richley H. Crapo
    • 1
  • Bryan R. Spykerman
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Sociology, Social Work and AnthropologyUtah State UniversityLogan

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