Diatopic variety definition and characteristics

Diatopic variety

The diatopic variety of the language is also known as geographic or dialectThis means that the language will be different depending on where the speaker lives or grew up.At this point, it is essential to know what a dialect is , because the diatopic variety is nothing more than the different dialects that we can find within the same language according to a geographical criterion. Thus, we can point out that dialects are systems that have signs, expressions and variations corresponding to a specific geographical area and that are part of a common language.

Diatopic variation

Diatopic variation , is the variation characterized by geographical differences , that is, differences related to physical space, such as countries, regions, states, cities, rural areas, urban areas. With that, we can then speak of geographic variation , which is nothing more than the characteristic varieties of each region and which are acquired by its own speakers, that is, the speeches proper to its region. In this respect, these changes that occur due to geographical differences are considered dialects , which is why they speak in regional dialects , or regional variation.. This type of variation occurs because each region has its own cultures and traditions, its ways of speaking, etc., which directly influence its speakers.

A known example in Brazilian Portuguese is the linguistic differences that exist in each region of Brazil, because depending on the geographical space of the speech community, its own varieties are found . For example, “macaxeira”, “mandioca” and “aipim”, which serve to refer and / or specify the same plant in some regions of Brazil. Other examples fit this, such as “tangerine” and “tangerine” (which are spoken in the Northeast and Southeast), “bergamot” (spoken mainly in the South) – among other terms that are spoken by specific speech communities in each region – are used to refer to a citrus fruit.

In addition, differences in the pronunciation of vowels are found in Brazilian regional dialects , such as those that occur in some pretonic ones, such as in the words “disgusting” and “onion”, which are pronounced in open by Northeastern speakers [nɔˈʒẽtʊ] and [ sɛˈbola], already with Southeast speakers, these same words are pronounced in a closed way [no’ʒẽtʊ] and [seˈbola].

The diatopical variation , or geographic , also corresponds to the identity and culture of the different speech communities , enabling the recognition of that particular speaker is distinguished from other speakers to belong to a particular community and not to another. Because it has a variety that is characteristic of its community, or region, etc.

The study and research of this type of linguistic variation is also aimed at dialectology . For, due importance is given by the researchers, the so-called dialectologists , who seek to observe and describe the linguistic realities of each region of Brazil. So that they can trace and geographically delimit the dialects, and thus achieve “full knowledge of Brazilian Portuguese”.And it is due to his works, which are recognized today, in Brazilian Portuguese, of the country, carioca, northeastern, southern, paulista, etc. varieties that come to be, the dialects that constitute this language as a whole.

Characteristics of the diatopic variety

Now that you know the definition of diatopic variety, it is important that you know what its main characteristics are so that you can easily recognize it:

  • They are recognized within the same language: because they derive from a common language, they are understood by the speakers of that language.
  • They present different registers: depending on the way they are used, they will present different registers, that is, they also have different levels, whether they are colloquial, formal or informal.
  • They are local: these varieties are located in a specific place. That is, there is a group of speakers defined by geographical area. Although the rest of the speakers of the language from which it comes can understand it, they belong to a certain place.
  • Common writing: they maintain writing and literary tradition with the language of origin.
  • They are historical: the geographical variations serve historical reasons, either by contact with other languages ​​or by different own elaborations referring to different factors.

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