ERIC Number: ED105737
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1974-Dec
Reference Count: 0
Code Switching in "Lady Chatterly's Lover."
Shuy, Roger W.
The language or dialect used in a conversation will vary according to the social situation, the identity of the participants, and the conversational topic. Bilinguals will often switch languages to suit the topic or the listener; persons who speak both standard and dialect forms of a language will use the standard in formal conversation and the dialect when discussing local issues with local people. This linguistic code-switching theory is applied to D. H. Lawrence's "Lady Chatterly's Lover" to examine the author's use of language in the novel. Several conversations involving Lady Chatterly, Sir Clifford Chatterly, Mellors the gamekeeper, and others are analyzed. It is observed that Mellors, the only character to use code-switching regularly, speaks standard English with Sir Clifford and others, but often uses a Derbyshire dialect with Lady Chatterly to convey intimacy, to confuse her, or to exert power over her. He alternates between standard English and Derbyshire to suit his purpose. That Lawrence employed this linguistic switching consciously is illustrated by his accuracy and his authorial comments on language. The theory of code-switching and similar linguistic developments may be of some use in literary analysis. (CK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Modern Language Association (New York City, December 1974)