#2648. 17世紀後半からの言語的権威のブルジョワ化[sociolinguistics][history][monarch][dryden]


 Knowles (120) によれば,Elizabeth 朝を含め,それ以降の1世紀のあいだ君主と結びつけられていた言語的権威が,17世紀後半から18世紀にかけて中産階級と結びつけられるようになり,現在にまで続くイギリスにおける階級と言語使用の密接な関係の歴史が始まったという.

In a hierarchical society, it must seem obvious that those at the top are in possession of the correct forms, while everybody else labours with the problems of corruption. The logical conclusion is that the highest authority is associated with the monarchy. In Elizabeth's time, the usage of the court was asserted as a model for the language as a whole. After the Restoration, Dryden gave credit for the improvement of English to Charles II and his court. It must be said that this became less and less credible after 1688. William III was a Dutchman. Queen Anne was not credited with any special relationship with the language, and Addison and Swift were rather less than explicit in defining the learned and polite persons, other than themselves, who had in their possession the perfect standard of English. Anne's successor was the German-speaking elector of Hanover, who became George I. After 1714, even the most skilled propagandist would have found it difficult to credit the king with any authority with regard to a language he did not speak. Nevertheless, the monarchy was once again associated with correct English when the popular image of the monarchy improved in the time of Victoria.
   After 1714 writers continued to appeal to the nobility for support and to act as patrons to their work on language. Some writers, such as Lord Chesterfield, were themselves of high social status. Robert Lowth became bishop of London. But ascertaining the standard language essentially became a middle-class activity. The social value of variation in language is that 'correct' forms can be used as social symbols, and distinguish middle class people from those they regard as common and vulgar. The long-term effect of this is the development of a close connection in England between language and social class.

 ここで説かれているのは,政治的権威と言語的権威の連動である.理想的な君主制においては,君主の指導者としての地位と,彼らが話す言語の地位とが連動しているはずである.絶対的な政治的権力をもっている国王の口から出る言葉が,その言語の典型であり,模範であり,理想であるはずである.しかし,18世紀末以降に君臨したイギリス君主は,オランダ人の William III だったり,ドイツ人の George I であったりと,ろくに英語を話せない外国人だったのである(関連して,「#141. 18世紀の規範は理性か慣用か」 ([2009-09-15-1]) も参照).そこから推測されるように,イギリス君主は実際にイギリスの政治にそれほど関心がなかったのであり,イギリス国民によって「典型」「模範」「理想」とみなされるわけもなかった.ここから,国王の代理として政治を運営する "Prime Minister" 職(初代は Sir Robert Walpole)が作り出され,その職の重要性が増して現在に至るのだから,皮肉なものである.こうして,政治的権威は,国王から有力国民の代表者,実質的には富裕なブルジョワの代表者へと移行した.
 当然ながら,それと連動して,言語的権威の所在も国王からブルジョワの代表者へと,とりわけ言語に対して意識の高い文人墨客へと移行した.こうして,国王ではなく,身分の高い教養のある階級の代表者が英語の正しさを定め,保つ伝統が始まった.21世紀の言葉遣いにもの申す "pundit" たちも,この伝統の後継者に他ならない.

 ・ Knowles, Gerry. A Cultural History of the English Language. London: Arnold, 1997.

Referrer (Inside): [2016-07-30-1] [2016-07-28-1]

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