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Linguistic Insecurity in Winnipeg: Validation of a Canadian Index of Linguistic Insecurity

Thompson W. Owens and Paul M. Baker
Language in Society
Vol. 13, No. 3 (Sep., 1984), pp. 337-350
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4167543
Page Count: 14
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Linguistic Insecurity in Winnipeg: Validation of a Canadian Index of Linguistic Insecurity
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Abstract

The study reported here reports data on the validity of a Canadian version of Labov's "index of linguistic insecurity." Data were gathered from a random sample of two census tracts in Winnipeg, Canada. Both Labov's original test and a new Canadian equivalent test were given to the sample of eighty adults. Scores on the two tests were highly correlated, indicating high criterion validity of the Canadian test. Also, social class and gender differences followed the same pattern as in Labov's study, with the lower middle class and females showing higher levels of linguistic insecurity. The use of the New York City test in Winnipeg is discussed, and some details concerning Canadian English are presented.

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