We recommend demonstrating the influence of society and culture on a particular language at
the outset. Social and cultural contexts of human life shape language to a great extent. Languages
express the cultural legacy and social experience of a people. They serve as a conduit of knowledge
about lives that is transmitted from generation to generation. The bond between a language and the
culture which produced it cannot be neglected if we wish to understand the language fully and to use
it proficiently. A clear understanding of this accumulative-transmissive function of language, elicited
through vivid, real-life, language-specific examples, will reinforce students’ motivation to master
SCC and SLC competencies.
3. Definition of SCC and SLC
The practical mastering of SCC and SLC needs to begin with a consensus on what is meant by
these terms, We recommend starting with an overview of existing literature on SCC an SLC.. More
specifically, we recommend starting with language-specific definitions of SCC and SLC. For this
reason, in the Russian Workbooks, we focus exclusively on research relevant to this topic conducted
by Russian linguists.
SCC has been defined as the possession of sufficient background knowledge (BK) and
capability to activate this relevant BK in the process of culturally appropriate communication.
Background knowledge is generally defined as a body of knowledge that is shared by native-speakers
of a particular language. This common knowledge facilitates the ability of individuals to communicate,
work, and live together. BK unites a community and is a distinguishing characteristic of a national
Sociolinguistic competence has been defined by Russian linguists as mastery over broad range
of modern Russian language use evident in distinguishable spheres and in delineable social groups.