The authentic alien: Production and evaluation of sociolinguistic variation in Klingon

R.L. Starr, R Puderbaugh, Roey Gafter

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Klingon, a constructed language first developed in 1979, is one of the most well-known cultural products to emerge from Star Trek. As the sociopolitical outlook of the franchise has evolved over time, its use of Klingon has also shifted. This study integrates variationist analysis and qualitative analysis of fan and creator discourse to illustrate the multiple sociolinguistic functions of Klingon. We argue that the recent revival of ‘authentic’ phonology in Star Trek: Discovery reflects a broader transformation of Klingon’s significance from a resource for performing the Oriental Other to a means of indexing respect for foreign cultures and longtime fans.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLinguistic of America 94th annual meeting
StatePublished - 2020

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