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C1 - Dynamics and stability of regiolect boundaries

The modern regiolects (or “colloquial languages”) have their historical origin in the different types of Regional High German. Before the standardization of pronunciation for the theatre (1898, “received pronunciation), the historical prestigious variety was the only form of oral Standard German. Nowadays, the recent regiolects dominate everyday communication in Germany. Nevertheless, the systematic study of regiolect boundaries has only just begun. The respective cognitive representations have not yet been explored.

Dissertation projects in C1 seek to attract students with interests and prior knowledge in Phonology, Prosody, Variational linguistics, Perception linguistics, and Neurolinguistics.

Possible topics are:

  • The perception of regiolect boundaries: How do the historical dialect boundaries and the objective-linguistic differences in speaking Standard German relate to the perceptual relevance of regiolect boundaries?
  • Cognitive relevance of regiolect boundaries: Which physiological brain processes are associated with the dynamics and stability of regiolect boundaries?