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Susan Reichelt

Research student, Centre for Language and Communication Research, School of English, Communication and Philosophy


I came to Cardiff University after completing my MA at the University of Aberdeen with a focus on sociolinguistics. My current research project is a continuation study of my dissertation which was awarded with distinction and inspired my wish to pursue a career in academia.

Academic Background

PhD in  Language and Communication Research, Cardiff University (2014-present)
MLitt in  Sociolinguistics, University of Aberdeen (2011-2012) (Distinction)
BA in  English Studies, University of Hamburg, Germany (2007-2011)

Conferences, symposia and seminars

July 2016 International Conference on Dialect and Literature (ICDaL3), Sheffield
“Diachronic dialect shifts as character exposition tools”

April 2016 Breaking Boundaries: An interdisciplinary Social Sciences and Humanities conference, Cardiff
“Think inside the box: language diversity of fictional television characters”

May 2016 Postgraduate conference at the Centre for Language and Communication Research, Cardiff
“Style shifts as characterization cues in telecinematic discourse”

November 2015 PGR Seminar Series at the Centre for Language and Communication Research
“Authenticity and authorship in fictional television series”

September 2015 Language in the Media (Lim6), Hamburg, Germany
“’Well, that sounds like a real grown-up talking.’- Sociolinguistic representations of character identity   in fictional television series”

May 2015 International Conference on Language Variation in Europe (ICLaVE8), Leipzig, Germany
“’That was a bit, um, British, wasn’t it?’– Scripted Britishness on American television and its   comparability with British based media”

May 2014 Postgraduate conference at the Centre for Language and Communication Research, Cardiff
“Vague language as a means of characterization in Buffy the Vampire Slayer”

Invited Guest Lecture

November 2015 MA 52-355 Sprache im Film, Hamburg University, Hamburg, Germany
Methodikworkshop - Korpusanalyse: The sociolinguistic construction of character diversity in fictional   television series


Research interests

sociolinguistics, pragmatics, corpus linguistics, media studies, research methods


The sociolinguistic construction of character diversity in fictional television series

My research is focused on the creation of fictional television characters through linguistic patterning. Embedded in sociolinguistic and pragmatic theory and using a corpus stylistics approach I am looking at individual characters’ use of linguistic features. The corpus is drawn from six television series that span over two decades allowing not only for a detailed synchronic analysis of language variation, but also attempt a diachronic analysis of how language and characters evolve over time. Scripted television language in linguistic research is only slowly starting to gain momentum as researchers embrace the possibilities of using scripted language data to look into theories of gender representation, social networks, or authenticity. With my research I add to the groundwork of this emerging field and provide quantitative evidence of linguistic creation of identities. My aim is to establish fictional television language as a versatile variety of language that is worthy of consideration throughout linguistic research.