Linguistic Globalisation

Globalisation has been defined as the process whereby “events happening in one place importantly impact upon many other places, often remote in time and space” Urry (2003: 39). In the course of this strand of research, Isabelle Buchstaller has examined in detail the impact of globally available linguistic resources – such as the quotatives be like, all and go – in spatially discontinuous locales.

No LikesUS English: candy, san antonio
UK English: ground floor, rabbit

The investigation of the local processes that are involved in the adoption and negotiation of these global newcomers provides a holistic as well as a particularized view on the sociolinguistic mechanisms of globalization.

This strand of research investigates the linguistic constraints involved in then transmission and adaptation of global innovations, their social backdrop as well as the ideological processes involved.

Don't sound stupid, stop saying likeDon't sound stupid, stop saying likeBuchstaller has demonstrated that by way of creatively adapting linguistic innovations, speakers can participate in global trends, yet do so in a highly localized and idiosyncratic manner.

A micro-linguistic analysis of the emerging local practises allows us to situate localized linguistic processes into a “wider picture of structural becoming” (Blommaert 2003:613), and therefore provides one step forward to our understanding of the becoming of social spatiality.

To date, Buchstaller has focused on a comparison between the US and the UK. In collaboration with Alex D'Arcy (U Canterbury, New Zealand) she has broadened the scope of the project to more varieties.


Buchstaller, Isabelle (In progress). Quotatives: New trends and Sociolinguistic implications. Wiley-Blackwell

Buchstaller, Isabelle and Alexandra D'Arcy. 2009. "Localized globalization: A multi-local, multivariate investigation of quotative 'like'". Journal of Sociolinguistics 13(3): 291-332.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2008. The localization of global linguistic variants. English World Wide 29:1, 15-44.

Buchstaller, Isabelle and Alexandra D’Arcy. 2007 "Localized globalization: A multi-local, multivariate investigation of quotative 'like'". Paper presented at the 36. New Ways in Analysing Variation (NWAV), University of Pennsylvania.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2006. Social Stereotypes, Personality Traits and Regional Perceptions displaced: Attitudes towards the “new” quotatives in the UK. Journal of Sociolinguistics.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2006. Globalization and Local Reappropriation: The case of the Quotative System. Christa Dürenscheid, Jürgen Spitzmüller (Eds.). Trends and Developments in Youth Language Research. Frankfurt: Lang.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2005. “The tension between the global and the local: Quotative like and go: Paper presented at the ICLaVE. The Meertens Institute, Amsterdam. June 23-25

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2005. “Globalization and Local Reappropriation: The case of the Quotative System”. Paper presented at the Conference ‘Current Developments in Research into the Language of Young People on the Language of Young People’. University of Zurich, February 17-19.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2004. “Globalizing? A cross-variety investigation of the social constraints of quotative go during the like-era.” Paper presented at the Sociolinguistics Symposium 15, University of Newcastle, April 1-5.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2004. The Sociolinguistic Constraints on the Quotative System – US English and British English compared. Unpublished PhD thesis.

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2003. “Putting Perception to the Reality Test: The case of go and like” Paper presented at NWAV 32, University of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia, October 9-12

Buchstaller, Isabelle. 2003. “Comparing Perception and Reality: Language Attitude Survey versus Quantitative Sociolinguistic Distribution. The Case of the New Quotatives” Paper presented at the 4th UK Conference in Variation and Change, Sheffield University, September 11-13.