This concluding chapter argues that linguistic innovation tends to accelerate during less stable periods of history, and the degree of success of any term, speech style, or discourse depends on the degree to which it resonates with the general population, which in turn depends on its ability to tap into underlying ideologies, economies, and technologies of language. Moreover, how language is conceived—as identity marker or instrument—depends largely on the institutional context. Political rhetoric tends to treat language as a weapon, either for establishing and maintaining the “norms” of political behavior, as in Soviet Russian political culture, or for contesting that authority through the deployment of alternative discourses.
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