A Sociolinguistic Investigation of Word Borrowing Patterns in Putin’s Russia

Document Type

Grant Proposal

Date Accepted

Spring 2007

Project Description/Abstract

In this study, the focus is on the development of word borrowing patterns in the sociocultural climate of Putin’s Russia. In the 1990s, Russia was going through a period of infatuation with western cultures, politically aligning itself with the United States. Simultaneously, the Russian language adopted many loan words from American English (e.g., Ryzanova-Clarke, & Wade, 1999; Stakhnevich, 2003.) Today, the sociopolitical conditions are drastically different. In this project, I explore the longevity of the linguistic borrowings from the 1990s and identify new loanwords through the textual analysis of Russian print mass media. I examine the semantic domains of these borrowings from the standpoint of critical discourse analysis and investigate the loans’ morphological structure and their syntactical role(s). In my interpretation of the results, I rely on the notions from the critical theory to explicate the role of cross-linguistic borrowings in discourse and their connection to social change.

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