Curing the idea that Scots is slang

Minded o a hairtenin study fae 30 year back. In 1991 Janet Menzies, warkin wi young speakers o Glesga Scots foond that giein jist a basic talk aboot, ‘the facts relating to the Scots language’ had a muckle pey-aff for linguistic sel-confidence. Sic a wee blether wi thaim wis, ‘sufficient to cure the habit of equating all non-standard variables with slang’. Insteid they stairtit tae describe the selsame wirds as ‘my dialect’ or ‘the Scots language’. The tak-awa is it can be a skoosh tae turn dreich ideas aboot Scots aroon. Menzies, J. (1991) An investigation of attitudes to Scots and Glasgow dialect among secondary school pupils. Scottish Language, 10, 30-46

Scots one of ‘most spoken Engangered Euro Languages’

Most spoken endangered languages in Europe by country.

A decade or so ago UNESCO listed Scots as ‘vulnerable’ and Gaelic ‘definitely endangered’. However the well respected EGIDS (Expanded Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale) would now place Scots as ‘endangered’ due to the fragility of intergenerational transmission. This is why last year the team behind the Busuu language learning app listed Scots is one of 12 UK and European languages they identified as endangered. There was some coverage in the press at the time.

Scroll to Top