Debilitamiento estructural y cambio social: la evolución de los adverbios demostrativos 'allí' y 'allá' en el español antiguo (siglos XVI-XVIII)

The present study discus the main results of a historical sociolinguistic study that examines the same phenomenon of variation (allí / allá) in two key periods of Spanish history: Golden Age Spanish (16th century) and the first period of modern Spanish (18th century). Based on a corpus composed entirely of private correspondence, and the use of a comparative methodology, the results show that, despite the significant increase in the uses of allí in the second period, the internal constraints that govern the variation continue to be basically the same. However, a careful examination of several quantitative magnitudes shows a significant weakening in most of these structural constraints. Even so, the main changes are taking place in the socio-stylistic level, as revealed by the preference for the new forms among the socio-cultural elites and the more formal contexts. On the contrary, popular classes show to be more attached to the traditional form (allá), especially in migratory contexts such as the Hispano-American speech communities ​
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