CLASS NORMS OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE ON THE BASIS OF SPEECH CHARACTERISTICS OF FILM-CHARACTERS
Class division is one of the characteristics of the English society, which is markedly different from other countries, because it is based on the origin and formation. Over time, the boundaries between the classes gradually began to fade, but there are still some class differences, which manifest themselves at different levels on the linguistic, psychological, social and others. This paper attempts to explore an aspect of the class division of the English society.
The presented work is devoted to subject matter «Class norms of the English speech on the material of speech characteristics of cinema characters». The urgency of the given work is caused, on the one hand, by that fact that a class division of the society still exists in England. On the other hand, nowadays cinema is the most popular type of art by means of which people can receive concept about the world as a whole, about the different countries and cultures, about epoch and civilizations.
Using the movie can be shown different human behaviour in different situations, as well as reflect the everyday life of different nations. Moreover, unlike literature, where the action can be deployed on hundreds of pages, giving the author the opportunity to describe in detail every detail, the movie is more limited by time frame. So we decided to see how the writers of the film reflect the reality of life.
Theoretical Background of Study
The level of scientific development is formed by the theoretical basis of scientific papers, giving a broad concept of class rules, and what they include, as well as involving consideration of lexical units of the language and stylistic means of expressiveness.
The object of this study is the image of various social classes of the British society. The subject of the research are lexical stylistic means of creating this image in the cinema. The purpose of the study is to highlight the lexical-stylistic means, which are used to create the image of the representatives of the various classes of society on the material selected four films of different years of release and see how linguistic patterns have been changing over time.
All cultures have a social hierarchy and methods of signaling social status. It is significant that the class division of the English society is different from other European countries because, first of all, the origin and educational background are taken into consideration. The class hierarchy in the UK is a rather complicated system, because sometimes some classes that have interposition can differ from each other through some slight nuances [1, p. 49-60]. Although it has become less obvious in recent times, but still Great Britain remains fairly strict class division. As a basis of our research we take one of the main factors determining the social class - vocabulary/ terminology. For our research we took four movies those main characters belong to different social classes of society: "The Bridget Jones's Diary", "Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason", "King's speech", "Kingsman: The Secret Service" and have analysed their speech in order to see how the screenwriters of movies reflect the reality of the English society. So we have selected all the words and expressions that cannot be included into a neutral vocabulary.
The relevance of study
The relevance of this study is a result of high interest to the study of concept of so-called class norm, as well as to the ways and forms of reflection of the language in the culture of mankind, which determine the specificity of usage of different layers of vocabulary in variant situations in people's speech who belong to upper/ upper-middle classes and lower and working classes.
Many researchers have attempted to analyse the speech of different social classes of the English society. However, until now there are no separate classifications of consumed vocabulary and dictionaries. The concept of the speech of upper and lower classes of society is made up of people's ideas that the representatives of high society use the literary or formal or bookish language, that gives their speech sound as noble. The representatives of the lower classes use in their speech slang and colloquial (informal) language. But this assumption may not always be accurate.
Kate Fox says that it is enough only to hear speech of Englishman in order to recognize his social class. In 1955, Nancy Mitford published an article in which she divided vocabulary into two groups that are used only by upper and lower classes respectively. But Kate Fox considers this model is not sufficiently complete and he made her own classification on the basis of article Mitford. She called it "seven deadly sins", in other words seven words that are considered infallible indicators of social class.
As a part of our analysis of the various layers of vocabulary used by different representatives of the UK social classes, we concluded that the boundaries between speech of upper classes and between the middle and lower classes gradually began to fade. Mostly the changes touch vocabulary that is used in speech of high society. If previously the speech of aristocrats was considered as literary, correct and "clean," speech of modern representatives of the upper classes includes swearing, slang and colloquial vocabulary. Of course, their number isn't so numerous, but their presence has already indicated that even the conservative English society is affected by the process of massification and erasing class differences in many Western European countries.
Analysis of the speech characters
Having analysed the speech of characters of selected movies, we’ve found the words, that according to the researchers can point directly to the class of the speaker. For example, in the movies about Bridget Jones, the main character Bridget uses the word «toilet» for referring the lavatory: Do you know where the toilets are? However, for indicting the same place Mark Darcy uses the word «loo»: Let's get a drink. l'm going to go to the loo, then l'm going to come back. So, we see that even in these two words characters belong absolutely to the different social classes of society. About Bridget Jones' social class we know thanks to her parents, for instance, when her mother tries to teach Bridget an etiquette: - Patience, please. l've got a big surprise for you, darling. - What -? Do not say "what" ', say "pardon". We see that asking for repetition, Bridget uses the word «what», which serves as a marker of high society, but her mom teaches that it is necessary to use the word «pardon», which is an indicator of the working class or lower middle-class.
However, word-indicators cannot always help in defining the class of the speaker. For example, in the movie «King's speech» speech therapist Lionel Logue, the son of a brewer, belongs to the lower class of society by his origin. But being well-read and educated, though without any diplomas and degrees, he speaks not worse than any member of the upper class. For example, if we take indicators of Kate Fox, he will not be considered as the representative of the lower class of society. If Bridget Jones and Mark Darcy use different word-indicators, Lionel Logue uses the word indicator of the upper classes: I'm just in the loo. Further, we will see that he uses more colloquial language while speaking with other people, thus helps to create a relaxed atmosphere. However, when the wife of the future king comes to him to record her husband to the reception, their speech differs very much from each other, and we see, that Lionel is not the representative of upper classes (Gurova Y., Tusheva Ks., 2016).
- How do you do?
- Oh, chuffing along. Um, now, this is slightly awkward, but I'm afraid you're late.
- Yes. I'm afraid I am.
- Where's Mr. Johnson?
- Ah... He doesn't know I'm here.
- Well, that's not a very promising start.
- No. No, look, my husband has seen everyone. To no avail. I'm awfully afraid he's given up hope.
- He hasn't seen me.
- Awfully sure of yourself.
- Well, I'm sure of anyone who wants to be cured.
- Of course he wants to be cured. My husband is, um... Well, he's required to speak publicly.
- Perhaps he should change jobs.
- Well, we need to have your hubby pop by. Uh... Tuesday would be good. He can give me his personal details, I'll make a frank appraisal- and then we'll take it from there.
- Doctor, forgive me. Uh, I don't have a "hubby."We don't "pop." And nor do we ever talk about our private lives. No, you must come to us.
In this dialogue we can see the sharp contrast between the Duchess's speech and speech of the speech therapist. Her speech contains the formal language, it is extremely polite, while Mr. Logue uses colloquial language and keeps quite freely, and as a result the Duchess has to correct him.
In the conclusion we can say that the vocabulary of upper and lower classes is changing, lower - a little bit faster that upper.
The analysis indicates that English society still has strict class division, but the names of these classes can vary. It is worth to underline, that the selection of language means is made according to current situation of communication, so upper class can use colloquial vocabulary during the conversation with relatives and close friends and lower classes can use formal vocabulary at some meetings or in order to make good impression. Thus we see that specific usage of different language layers can fulfill various functions - emotional, expressive, stylistic, evaluative and others.