Sociolinguistics: Towards a Complex Ecological View

  • Albert Bastardas-Boada
Part of the Understanding Complex Systems book series (UCS)


As the sociologist Norbert Elias pointed out, there is a need of new procedural models to get to grasp the complex functioning of human-beings-in-society. An ecological complexity approach could be useful to advance our knowledge. How can we think of a sociolinguistic “ecosystem”? What elements do we need to put in such an ecosystem and what analogies could be applied? The (bio)ecological inspiration is a metaphorical exercise to proceed toward a more holistic approach in dynamic sociolinguistics. However, a language is not a species and, therefore, we need to make our complex ecology socio-cognitive and multidimensional. We need to create theories and represent to ourselves how language behaviour is woven together with its contexts in order to maintain language diversity and, at the same time, foster general human intercommunication on a planetary scale.


Language Policy Human Language Planetary Scale Complex View Language Behaviour 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Albert Bastardas-Boada
    • 1
  1. 1.Departament of General Linguistics, Complexity, Communication, and Sociolinguistics Group, CUSC – University Center of Sociolinguistics and CommunicationUniversitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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