Language, differentiation and convergence: the shifting ideologies of Tyneside dialect song in the nineteenth century

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Abstract

Tyneside dialect song flourished especially from the beginning of the nineteenth century onwards. Much of the material was initially written for public house singing or later for the music hall, its subject matter predominantly the lives and antics of the labouring classes. This chapter explores the historical evidence for satire in early song, and the controversial position of music hall in relation to discourses of 'respectability' later in the century. It explains that both early and later Tyneside song for differing reasons might imply antagonisms between or within particular groups in the area. Tyneside dialect songs are often claimed to convey local, regional and labouring-class identity and solidarity. Such claims ignore real contrasts in language, character, persona and ideology which can be detected in songs and between them. In the later period contrasts in language between voice types diminish and the overall impression is a convergence towards the language and ideologies of large sections of Tyneside's industrial labouring class.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDialect and literature in the long nineteenth century
EditorsJane Hodson
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Chapter8
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781315576954
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Feb 2017
Externally publishedYes

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