New Ways of Analyzing Variation 42 General Information

Thanks for a great conference everyone! Future conference information:

NWAV 43:

October 23-26, 2014
Hilton Chicago Magnificent Mile Suites Hotel
Organized by the University of Illinois

NWAV 44:

October 22-25, 2015
University of Toronto

Check out our Facebook page!


Hosted by:
University of Pittsburgh
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Pittsburghers like to boast that our city has more bridges than any other city in the world. In addition to bridging rivers, runs, highways, and hollows, Pittsburgh also bridges the past and the present. The city was at the heart of American industrial expansion in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, a testament to the glory and ignominy of the United States during this industrial era. Thirty years ago, however, the city’s economy collapsed. Now, while manufacturing is still important, the city and region have made a mostly successful transition to industries of the present and future, especially education, health care, and high technology. But signs of the past are inescapable in Pittsburgh, and the city of the past has shaped the city of the present. The study of linguistic variation and language change likewise bridges the present and the past, both in theory and in method. William Labov’s Uniformitarian Principle – that change in the present unfolds on the same principles as change that happened in the past — is an important assumption in most studies of sociolinguistic variation. And the “new ways of analyzing variation” never entirely replace the old ways. Innovation is always shaped by the history of sociolinguistics and of linguistics in general.

Plenary speakers

Jenny Cheshire, Queen Mary, University of London
Valerie Kinloch, The Ohio State University
Gillian Sankoff, University of Pennsylvania

Special Events

We will have a special session in connection with Dr. Kinloch’s plenary on Language, Youth Identities, and Education. Educators who wish to attend for this uk best essays session only are welcome and will be able to register the session for a reduced fee.

Workshops will take place Thursday, October 17.

Organizing Committee

Shelome Gooden
Barbara Johnstone
Scott Kiesling
Amanda Godley
Allison Thompson

Special thanks to Mage Wegner for designing the logo.