Irene Yi’s The Sociolinguistics Series provides a new viewpoint on language

Irene Yis The Sociolinguistics Series provides a new viewpoint on language

When reading the disclaimer “food for thought” on a Friday night after a long week of hustle and bustle, typically, I am immediately turned away. Typically, that means a lot of brain power I am not necessarily willing to give up that late in the week. However, for some reason, I pressed on.

Perhaps it was because of the introduction that spoke directly to the reader, or maybe because of the fact that I had absolutely no idea what sociolinguistics was. Regardless of the reasoning, I am so glad I continued.

The Sociolinguistics Series, written by my own peer (Irene Yi), could have been written by any scholar or professor, given the abundance of intelligence wrapped into every word. However, the thing that made it stand out, the thing that made me able to comprehend such a topic after a long week of pounding things into my head, was the conversational tone.

Irene’s ability to talk about such a complex topic in a way that I, someone who wasn’t even able to identify the word sociolinguistics prior to reading, is remarkable. Her use of metaphors and pure emotional appeal gives the reader a full understanding of what she is talking about.

Her use of examples through her own experimental surveys makes me want to care just as much about the difference between someone saying “rockin'” and “rocking” as she does. Her use of quotations in her surveys from every day, off-the-street people makes me relate to them, causing me to care even more about speech, language, grammar, and all the things I would otherwise never even begin to think about.

All in all, for a 17-year-old to write about a complex topic with such ease and sophistication all while writing in a text that I can understand is a prime example of sociolinguistics itself (assuming I truly did understand the concept). But also, this seemingly scholarly compilation of essays makes you feel in all the right spots, making it not only interesting to read from an educational standpoint, but an emotional one as well.

As quickly as I finished the first, I began to wait apprehensively for the next. But, as you know, as soon as you finish her book, you can open a new tab and find some of Irene’s writing in a different source too. 😉