Socioeconomic Status

While the difference in sociodemographic classification system across the two time periods makes direct comparisons tenuous, the clarity of the pattern in the earlier 1967 panel data slice is striking. With the notable exception of PastPartZ, socioeconomic standing had a stable effect in the first recording (Figure 1.5, upper panel), with the highest social class (SocCat-I) using significantly more standard forms. The 1996 data reveal a similar trend in which the highest or second highest social group(s) (SEI-1 and SEI-2) almost consistently produced the lowest frequencies of vernacular forms. Only with DefSingNeut do we see the class effect evening out by 1996.

Figure 1.5 Panel study speakers in 1967 and 1996 by socioeconomic status from SEI-1 for the highest to SEI-4 for the lowest social group; percentage of standard forms; significant differences between the highest and lowest social groups calculated via Z-scores: + = p < .10; * = p < .05; ** = p < .01; *** = p < .001; П = 3864.

Social Mobility

As pointed out above, in the 1996 trend study, upwardly mobile informants (16 men and 16 women) produced more standard forms than stable informants (13 men and 12 women), 52% standard versus 43% non-standard (Sundgren 2002: 262-263). Not surprisingly, the majority of the upwardly mobile individuals in the trend study were found in social groups 1 and 2, whereas stable (and downwardly mobile) respondents were most frequently situated in social groups 3 and 4. For the panel study in 1967, the variables with a flat pattern in the trend study (IDecIPlur, Pretl, PastPartl&4, and Pret-become), as well one change in progress (DefPlurNeut), demonstrate the expected patterning, such that the socially mobile speakers use higher rates of the normative standard variant (see Figure 1.6, upper panel).

It appears that the ongoing change DefPlurNeut, in particular, carries a significant amount of prescriptive weight in Eskilstuna, making it a

Panel study (1967 vs. 1996) by social mobility; percentage of standard forms; significant differences calculated via Z-scores

Figure 1.6 Panel study (1967 vs. 1996) by social mobility; percentage of standard forms; significant differences calculated via Z-scores: + = p < .10; * = p < .05; ** = p < .01; *** = p < .001; n = 3599 (12 speakers).

Table 1.6 Distribution of the seven linguistic variables for the 13 panel study informants (1967 and 1996); percentage of standard forms; speakers sorted by overall percent change - no observed instances of the variable

1 DecIPlur

Pretl

PastPart-

1&4

Pret-

become

DefPlur-

Neut

DefSing-

Neut

PastPart2

Average

informant

Year

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

Maria

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 0
  • 5
  • 30
  • 0
  • 0
  • 15
  • 88
  • 8
  • 0
  • 13
  • 78
  • 0
  • 0
  • 4
  • 26
  • 0
  • 33

l

6

  • 53
  • 37
  • 15
  • 41
  • 71
  • 68
  • 7
  • 19
  • 23
  • 10
  • 60
  • 288

Axel

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 0
  • 7
  • 10
  • 2
  • 0
  • 47
  • 54
  • 0
  • 0
  • 18
  • 28
  • 0
  • 0
  • 10
  • 17
  • 11
  • 8
  • 8
  • 12
  • 67
  • 41
  • 39
  • 29
  • 100
  • 100
  • 3
  • 7
  • 23
  • 13
  • 132
  • 157

Greta

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 11
  • 0
  • 9
  • 16
  • 0
  • 0
  • 18
  • 93
  • 0
  • 3
  • 7
  • 33
  • 0
  • 0
  • 3
  • 22

NA

17

6

  • 85
  • 69
  • 13
  • 45
  • 100
  • 80
  • 2
  • 15
  • 27
  • 20
  • 52
  • 230

Olov

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 9
  • 13
  • 11
  • 21
  • 17
  • 33
  • 63
  • 5
  • 4
  • 38
  • 23
  • 0
  • 4
  • 7
  • 27
  • 20
  • 25
  • 5
  • 4
  • 76
  • 51
  • 42
  • 45
  • 86
  • 100
  • 14
  • 11
  • 35
  • 26
  • 152
  • 184

Gustav

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 15
  • 0
  • 13
  • 17
  • 3
  • 0
  • 35
  • 56
  • 2
  • 0
  • 64
  • 103
  • 14
  • 0
  • 14
  • 29
  • 36
  • 9
  • 11
  • 22
  • 12
  • 24
  • 33
  • 72
  • 75
  • 74
  • 16
  • 27
  • 14
  • 12
  • 186
  • 326

Lennart

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 0
  • 4
  • 7
  • 0
  • 0
  • 7
  • 41
  • 0
  • 4
  • 15
  • 47
  • 100
  • 100
  • 2
  • 14
  • 0
  • 0
  • 2
  • 6
  • 23
  • 38
  • 13
  • 34
  • 100
  • 44
  • 6
  • 9
  • 22
  • 21
  • 49
  • 158

Pelle

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 4
  • 19
  • 28
  • 0
  • 3
  • 27
  • 34
  • 2
  • 5
  • 52
  • 39
  • 0
  • 0
  • 6
  • 10
  • 0
  • 9
  • 2
  • 11
  • 16
  • 38
  • 37
  • 32
  • 50
  • 78
  • 20
  • 9
  • 10
  • 15
  • 163
  • 163

Bo

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 0
  • 5
  • 12
  • 0
  • 0
  • 10
  • 56
  • 0
  • 0
  • 18
  • 38
  • 100
  • 100
  • 1
  • 15
  • 0
  • 100
  • 4
  • 5
  • 8
  • 45
  • 12
  • 22
  • 100
  • 100
  • 10
  • 8
  • 20
  • 24
  • 60
  • 156

(Continued)

1 DecIPlur

Pretl

PastPart-

1&4

Pret-

become

DefPlur-

Neut

DefSing-

Neut

PastPartl

Average

Informant

Year

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

%

n

Kent

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 7
  • 1
  • 14
  • 50
  • 20
  • 8
  • 50
  • 7
  • 16
  • 15
  • 44
  • 100
  • 100
  • 1
  • 9
  • 100
  • 60
  • 2
  • 10
  • 31
  • 61
  • 16
  • 62
  • 100
  • 75
  • 1
  • 16
  • 32
  • 40
  • 44
  • 205

Ingrid

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 13
  • 30
  • 8
  • 27
  • 35
  • 51
  • 17
  • 5
  • 75
  • 55
  • 32
  • 60
  • 67
  • 86
  • 3
  • 14
  • 83
  • 85
  • 6
  • 13
  • 100
  • 94
  • 5
  • 69
  • 100
  • 100
  • 6
  • 26
  • 64
  • 74
  • 77
  • 214

Sonja

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 8
  • 7
  • 13
  • 0
  • 0
  • 7
  • 69
  • 0
  • 5
  • 12
  • 84
  • 100
  • 73
  • 1
  • 15

NA

0

9

  • 0
  • 45
  • 16
  • 60
  • 67
  • 85
  • 3
  • 13
  • 7
  • 21
  • 46
  • 263

Elin

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 0
  • 3
  • 21
  • 35
  • 0
  • 26
  • 7
  • 73
  • 0
  • 6
  • 11
  • 66
  • 71
  • 70
  • 7
  • 20
  • 0
  • 83
  • 2
  • 6
  • 17
  • 47
  • 12
  • 64
  • 100
  • 95
  • 1
  • 19
  • 13
  • 32
  • 61
  • 283

Kerstin

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 25
  • 8
  • 8
  • 12
  • 14
  • 56
  • 7
  • 32
  • 60
  • 78
  • 10
  • 27

NA

100

3

NA

100

12

  • 55
  • 82
  • 9
  • 28
  • 100
  • 100
  • 1
  • 6
  • 43
  • 70
  • 35
  • 120

Overall

  • 1967
  • 1996
  • 5
  • 6
  • 120
  • 232
  • 8
  • 9
  • 238
  • 714
  • 12
  • 11
  • 305
  • 670
  • 24
  • 36
  • 59
  • 221
  • 30
  • 38
  • 43
  • 122
  • 41
  • 52
  • 262
  • 603
  • 79
  • 84
  • 90
  • 185
  • 24
  • 27
  • 1117
  • 2747

paradigm variable for social risers (note its longitudinal salience and its clear patterning according to socioeconomic standing discussed above). The other two incoming variants, DefSingNeut and PastPartZ, however, do not seem to be recruited for the kind of social work we might expect of social risers. With these two variables, the stable (and downwardly mobile) speakers show higher rates of standard forms.

By 1996, the standard form of all variables is preferred by the socially stable and downwardly mobile speakers, whereas the upwardly mobile speakers tend to use more of the vernacular form. At first glance this result appears most curious. Why would upwardly mobile speakers turn to forms marked as vernacular in Eskilstuna? One reason why the upwardly mobile, in particular the men in our panel sample, tend to retain - or indeed increase - their use of local variants is that a portion of them have moved upwards on the socioeconomic scale, not because they attained the educational qualifications that were normally required for these positions, but because of whom they know in the local social economy (see discussion of Gustav and Axel below). These speakers achieved positions by 1996 that normally require postsecondary schooling without having completed the educational process and thus without the added exposure to standard language norms that is typical of educational establishments.

 
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