Stefania Marzo

Stefania Marzo
KU Leuven | ku leuven · Department of Linguistics

PhD Linguistics

About

44
Publications
4,016
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152
Citations
Introduction
Stefania Marzo is Associate Professor of Linguistics at the University of Leuven. Her research interests broadly fall into the area of variationist sociolinguistics and contact linguistics. She focuses specifically on the diffusion of urban vernaculars in Flanders, the evolution of Italian as a heritage language in Europe and on the dynamics of (re)standardization in contemporary Italian. On a methodological level, she combines corpus-based production research with experimental methods in order to investigate the social meaning of language variation.
Additional affiliations
October 2016 - present
KU Leuven
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
October 2010 - August 2016
KU Leuven
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
Description
  • My research interests lie in variationist sociolinguistics and contact linguistics. I focus in particular on multilingual vernaculars in urban settings (in Flanders) and on (de-/re-)standardization of Italian.

Publications

Publications (44)
Article
Full-text available
In this article, we investigate social meaning as a determinant of linguistic diffusion by confronting laboratory and corpus data of Citétaal, a multi-ethnolect that has spread across Flanders. In a speaker evaluation experiment, we found that Citétaal was upgraded on ‘streetwise dynamism’, even by respondents unfamiliar with its migrant origin. Fr...
Article
The field of sociolinguistics recently witnessed an upsurge of studies that investigate the way and period in which children acquire the social meaning of language, and that scrutinize the role of input for that acquisition. Language variation is at the same time increasingly studied in fictional genres, which have long been ignored because of the...
Presentation
Full-text available
Over the past decade, experimental evaluation research has unveiled some of the main determinants of fluidity and change in European standard languages: new “best languages” have appeared alongside the norm variety in the form of modern standards (or neo-standards, Auer 2017 & 2018). Crucially, neo-standards such as “Low Copenhagen” speech in Denma...
Article
This paper presents a quantitative analysis of the social meaning of style-shifts between standard and neo-standard Italian in a corpus of 200 recent TV commercials. As marketeers make good use of stylistic choices to address their target audience with positive values, such as spontaneity and authenticity, advertising offers highly suitable data to...
Article
This article explores the linguistic and meta-linguistic heritage of the Italian mine workers families that arrived in Belgian Limburg after the Second World War. On the basis of historical research, discourse analysis of texts and sociolinguistic interviews, I describe how the complex linguistic integration of first-generation migrants, that was s...
Article
Full-text available
Samenvatting In dit artikel tonen we aan de hand van kwalitatieve data aan hoe talige praktijken met sprekers en artiesten uit drie steden in de periferie van Nederland en België, namelijk Tilburg, Heerlen en Genk een lokale identiteit construeren en reproduceren en hoe op die manier het besef van lokale eigenheid tot stand komt. We laten zien dat...
Presentation
Full-text available
Token-based vector space models as semantic control in lexical sociolectometry
Article
Full-text available
In this article we present an overview of current debates in the analysis of cleft sentences. The types of sentences that are often seen as prototypical examples of the cleft category are introduced by it is or a cross-linguistic equivalent; in addition, they have specificational semantics and a focus-background information structure articulation....
Chapter
Full-text available
Cognitive linguists have been traditionally interested in uncovering the conceptual representation of cultural knowledge. For that endeavor, the semantic analysis of linguistic usage has become of prime importance in order to reveal metaphorical and associative schemas that as a whole are structured in so-called cultural models. Such models have be...
Chapter
This paper reveals how the study of contact-induced variation and change can benefit from a cross-fertilization between a third wave perspective on the social meaning of variation and a prototype-theoretical representation of meaning. As a case study we analyze the use of palatalized and non-palatalized /s/ in a corpus of self-recorded speech of sp...
Chapter
This paper reveals how the study of contact-induced variation and change can benefit from a cross-fertilization between a third wave perspective on the social meaning of variation and a prototype-theoretical representation of meaning. As a case study we analyze the use of palatalized and non-palatalized /s/ in a corpus of self-recorded speech of sp...
Article
Full-text available
Résumé Cet article est consacré à trois types de clivées en voici/voilà (type 1 : voilà le chat qui arrive , type 2 : le voilà qui arrive , type 3 : voilà deux semaines que j’attends ). Nous analysons (i) l’alternance entre voici et voilà , (ii) la distribution des trois types dans deux corpus, (iii) l’alternance entre le premier et le deuxième typ...
Article
Full-text available
This paper investigates the information structural and discursive properties of Italian c’è ‘there is’ clefts (C’è il gatto che ha fame, ‘There’s the cat that is hungry’). We argue by means of a qualitative corpus analysis that c’è clefts are more versatile than previously assumed: not only are c’è clefts able to express several information structu...
Article
Due to several migration flows in Flanders many urban areas have become increasingly multicultural and multilingual, as is the case in the former ghettoized areas (cités) of Limburg, where a new urban vernacular – often called Citélanguage – has emerged. This vernacular has recently gained popularity in mainstream media and has been adopted in publ...
Book
In many European languages the National Standard Variety is converging with spoken, informal, and socially marked varieties. In Italian this process is giving rise to a new standard variety called Neo-standard Italian, which partly consists of regional features. This book contributes to current research on standardization in Europe by offering a co...
Chapter
This chapter provides an overview of the main topics concerning the restandardization process of Italian. We will first discuss some general issues related to the Italian sociolinguistic situation, paying special attention to the status of Italo-Romance dialects and their relationship with Italian, the demotization process entailed by the twentieth...
Chapter
This chapter investigates native speakers' attitudes towards accent variation in regionally flavored neo-standard Italian. Literary standard Italian has undergone a process of downward convergence towards spoken, regional and stylistically informal varieties, eventually leading to the emergence of a composite new standard, the so-called 'neo-standa...
Article
Full-text available
Regional Italians: language attitudes toward the geographical varieties of Italian This paper explores the opportunities of presented by a direct attitude experiment on regional varieties of the Italian language. It starts with an overview of existing literature on language attitudes, with a special focus on the role of attitudes in standard langua...
Article
Samenvatting De afgelopen decennia zijn verschillende Europese steden geëvolueerd tot ware multiculturele ontmoetingsplaatsen waar nieuwe, meertalige taalvariëteiten door jongeren worden verspreid. Uit deze studie blijkt dat de Belgisch-Limburgse variant die in de mijnbouwwijken wordt gesproken, namelijk Citétaal, positieve reclameattitudes en aank...
Article
This paper presents a corpus-based analysis of child-directed speech during Flemish family dinner table interactions. Specifically, we study parents’ style-shifts, that is, their alternation between Standard Dutch and Colloquial Belgian Dutch, a non-standard supraregional variant of Dutch, when interacting with their children. By integrating insigh...
Article
This paper examines how language accommodation, in terms of incorporating a youth slang (Citetaal) in advertising slogans, enhances general advertising attitudes and buying intentions among youngsters. Citetaal, a youth slang spoken in multicultural areas in Flemish Limburg, is perceived as a variety spoken in the city of Genk by youngsters of migr...
Article
Following and contributing to the ongoing shift from more structuralist, system-oriented to more pragmatic, socio-cultural oriented anglicism research, this paper verifies to what extent the global spread of English affects naming patterns in Flanders. To this end, a diachronic database of first names is constructed, containing the top 75 most popu...
Article
The aim of this paper is to examine the distribution of presentative constructions in contemporary Italian and to verify whether their occurrence depends on language external factors. Presentative constructions have been studied particularly by Italian linguists during the Eighties, and were defined as being ‘typical’ of so-called Neostandard Itali...
Article
This paper aims to provide a more nuanced understanding of the social meaning of a contemporary urban vernacular called Citétaal (Citélanguage). While most studies on the perception of urban vernaculars have applied qualitative discursive methods, we investigate the perception of and attitudes towards Citétaal by combining a qualitative and quantit...
Article
The aim of this paper is to contribute to the sociolinguistic discussion about the need for a unified sociological theory, by applying realist social theory (RST) (Carter and Sealey, this volume) to the total linguistic fact (TLF) (Silverstein 1985) or to the semiotics of ‘new’ speech styles in heterogeneous urban spaces. We explore, with data from...
Article
This paper illustrates the results of a corpus-driven analysis on the translation from Italian into Dutch of “realia” in subtitles. In Translation Studies, “realia” are generally defined as words and expressions with culture-specific meaning. In the present paper, we focus on a particular type of “realia”, namely honorifics. The analysis of “realia...
Article
This article questions the long-standing assumption that heritage Italian can be characterized as italiano popolare on account of a number of similar non-standard features. It is argued that this is a problematic comparison due to some methodological lacunae in research into heritage Italian and that a systematic corpus-based analysis is needed in...
Chapter
During recent years, much linguistic research has been done on the emergence of what Rampton (2011a; Chapter 2, this volume) calls ‘contemporary urban vernaculars’. Although the term in itself is not so transparent as to exactly what kind of linguistic practice it describes, it gives a thorough picture of what characterizes urban vernaculars and th...
Article
The aim of this paper is to examine the distribution of presentative constructions in contemporary Italian and to verify whether their occurrence depends on language external factors. Presentative constructions have been studied particularly by Italian linguists during the Eighties, and were defined as being 'typical' of so-called Neostandard Itali...
Presentation
Full-text available
Teaching materials for Italian as a Second/Foreign language are rather sparse, especially if we consider materials based on authentic spoken language, not to mention naturally occurring spontaneous interactions. Language students are generally almost exclusively exposed to the language used in classroom interactions (thus focused on classroom activ...
Article
The term Citétaal was originally used to refer to the language spoken by Italian immigrants in the Eastern part of Flanders (Limburg) and diffused in the former ghettoised mining areas (the cité). It is a melting pot language, based on Dutch but with a high amount of code mixture from immigrant languages, mostly Italian and Turkish. Recently, its u...
Article
Questa indagine vuole trarre un quadro più complessivo delle dinamiche variazionali dell’italiano all’estero. Ci si concentrerà sulla variazione dialettale che caratterizza l’italiano parlato nel Limburgo (Belgio). L’indagine globale di cui fa parte questo articolo, ha essenzialmente due scopi. Prima di tutto vuole prendere distanze dal concetto it...

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Projects

Projects (4)
Project
Cross-generational variation in Heritage Italian spoken by three generations of Italians in the mining neighborhoods of Flemish Limburg.