2002 ANNUAL MEETING
SAN FRANCISCO HYATT REGENCY
The LSA will hold its annual meeting at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco, located at the Embarcadero Center. The website for the Embarcadero Center is http://www.embarcaderocenter.com/rc/index_rc.html . The hotel has several restaurants, a 24-hour on-site fitness room; guests also have access to Club One Health Club adjacent to the hotel. The special LSA rates for the meeting are:
Hyatt Regency San Francisco
5 Embarcadero Center
San Francisco, CA94111
are subject to availability if received after 2 December 2001.
The guest check-in time is 3:00 PM, and check-out time is 12:00 noon.
SPCL conference participants are ALSO required to register for the LSA meeting. The LSA Annual Meeting registration allows registrants to attend any of the scholarly sessions being presented by any of the participating societies: American Dialect Society (ADS), American Name Society (ANS), North American Association for the History of the Language Sciences (NAAHoLS), LSA, and Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas (SSILA) as well as the SPCL sessions. For further information, the LSA website is http://www.lsadc.org/.
LSA advanced registration is available only to LSA Members. Members attending the 2002 LSA Meeting may preregister when they renew their membership for 2002 or by sending the preregistration tearout (see LSA website at http://www.lsadc.org/) or a photocopy with a check for registration by 3 December 2001.Preregistration fees for the 2002 Annual Meeting are:
Regular Members :$60.00
All preregistrations received after 21 December will be returned following the meeting, and individuals will have to register at the meeting. Preregistrants may claim badges and handbooks at the registration desk in the meeting area of the hotel beginning late in the afternoon of 3 January.
Registration will open at noon on 3 January and will be open all day 4 and 5 January. The registration fees for the 2002 Annual Meeting are:
NOTE: Fees may be paid with cash, check, or traveller’s cheque. Credit card payments WILL NOT be accepted for on-site registration under any circumstances.
in the Mission District.
Top of Document
This paper argues that Saramaccan left peripheral constructions express the morphosyntax of the Gbe languages. Granting the split-C hypothesis, I suggest that Saramaccan and Gbe manifest an articulated complementizer system (CS) whereby the features (topic, focus, interrogative) are encoded by discrete heads (Inter°, Top°, Foc°) whose specifiers host the fronted constituents in a spec-head configuration (Rizzi 1997, Aboh 1999). In those languages, the head may be morphologically realised as a marker. In this respect, the Saramaccan focus marker wE is considered a flagrant case of morphosyntactic inheritance. This analysis extends to other left peripheral constructions. For instance, I argue that the Saramaccan/Gbe wh- and focus-phrases compete for the same position SpecFocP. I further propose, contra Byrne (1987), that the Saramaccan complementizer-like fu and quasi-modal fu are components of the CS. Like their Gbe counterparts (i.e. conditional n-type1 and injunctive n-type2) they encode clausal type (e.g. purpose, declarative) and finiteness (e.g. mood specifications) respectively. The two types of information are expressed by two distinct heads: Force° and Fin° that project above and bellow the interrogative-topic-focus articulation respectively. Complementizer-like fu and conditional n-type1 manifest Force°, while quasi-modal fu and injunctive n-type2 encode Fin°.
(East Carolina University)
Statian Creole English: A history with grammatical features
The English of St. Eustatius in the Eastern Caribbean has largely gone undocumented by creolists. Statians are mostly monolingual in English, even though the official language of the island is Dutch. Why varieties of English emerged as the lingua franca of Statia is not clear, other than the fact that St. Eustatius was historically an important trading center in the region that may have employed English as its primary language of trade. This paper presents data derived from audiotape based on fieldwork. SCE exhibits some unique features. For example, the verb phrase is typically unmarked for the relative past tense for both stative and non-stative verbs, often relying instead on adverbials to mark this distinction (e.g. /a wan it las yir/ "I wanted it last year," /a pass dei yestide/ "I passed by there yesterday"). Why did SCE not select a relative past tense marker candidate such as preverbal /bin/, /min/, /di(d)/ or /woz/ as are found among other Caribbean Anglophone Creoles? This paper presents the SCE verbal complex as well as a sociohistorical examination of the island’s demographics to understand the speakers and languages that have contributed to the emergence of this restructured language.
(Heinrich Heine Universität Düsseldorf/Germany)
Double Object Constructions in Creole Acquisition
This paper is concerned with the acquisition and development of double object constructions in two Creole languages (Morisyen and Seselwa). Bruyn, Muysken and Verrips (2000) have shown that double object constructions are seen in many creoles, independent of the lexifier languages involved in their genesis.
In the first part of the paper I present data on double object constructions (hereafter DOC) and Prepositional dative constructions (hereafter PDC) in adult Morisyen and Seselwa grammar. I argue that DOCs are the default constructions. In the second part, I analyze both spontaneous and experimental data of Morisyen and Seselwa speaking children, and relate the results to the findings in acquisition studies of non-Creole languages. One of the most important results of the acquisition data shows that children (across the board) overgeneralise the DOC pattern to prepositional dative verbs. Further, I explore the implications of these findings for the current debate on creole genesis.
Umberto Ansaldo and Stephen Matthews
(National University of Singapore and University of Hong Kong)
The origins of Macanese reduplication
This paper traces the linguistic origins of reduplication in Macanese, a Portuguese based creole of Macao. Based on historical and structural observation, we argue that Sinitic as well as Malay substrate influences can be identified. The best?known of the Macanese reduplication patterns involve nominal reduplication, notably plural forms, for which a Malay substrate may be suspected, e.g.
(1) nhonha ‘woman’ -> nho-nhonha ‘women’
Similarly, for distributive numeral reduplication we have:
(2) unga-unga ta falá.
one-one PROG speak
‘(they) are speaking one by one.’
These patterns are shared with, and appear to be inherited from, older Portuguese creoles such as Papiá Kristang. A second set of Macanese reduplication shows adverbial reduplication:
(3) chai falá fórti-fórti ‘Chai spoke loudly’
Here we suspect the influence of the Cantonese substrate, based on a process deriving reduplicated adverbs from adjectives in Chinese. It is interesting that the Cantonese pattern is preverbal and the Macanese postverbal. The existence of preverbal patterns in sound-symbolic reduplication (4) further implicates substrate influence from Cantonese:
The Cantonese substrate renders Macanese particularly distinctive among Portuguese creoles as it combines typical Malayo-Portuguese elements with a distinct Chinese influence reminiscent of China-coast pidgins.
Philip Baker and Magnus Huber
(University of Westminster and University of Regensberg)
Atlantic, Indo-Pacific, and world-wide features in French-lexicon P/Cs
This paper extends the techniques used in our recent study of 13 English-lexicon contact languages (English World-Wide 22.2) to ten French P/Cs: Antillais, Français Tirailleur, Haitian, Louisianais, Mauritian, Reunionnais, Seychellois, Tay Boi, and Tayo. Some 200 lexical and grammatical features are examined to explore their genesis and development. All these features represent significant departures from metropolitan varieties of French and each is shared by at least two P/Cs Employing methodology which allows us to calculate degrees of affinity even where there are major differences in the quantity and quality of the available data, we clarify their interrelationships. "World-wide" features, common to Atlantic and Indo-Pacific varieties, are of particular interest. We claim these constituted a repertoire of techniques and lexical items which sailors acquired informally while observing more experienced colleagues communicating with the local population at ports of all. We insist that these features did not themselves constitute a Pidgin but that their use facilitated the development of a Pidgin wherever contacts became frequent. It follows that we conclude, contrary to the prevailing view among French Creolists, that most of these Creoles derive from an earlier Pidgin.
University of Georgia
Cape Verdean Creole as a Radically Pro-drop Language
Cape Verdean Creole (CVC) personal pronouns have been traditionally divided into two categories: strong pronouns (ex: ami/mi ‘I, me’) and clitics (N ‘I’) (cf.Veiga, 1982/1995, Cardoso 1996) serving canonically as subjects of their verbal predicates. Although this two-way classification appears satisfactory on the surface, no attention was paid, in the pioneering literature mentioned above, to the interpretation of verbal predicates in the absence of overt pronouns.
The objective of this paper is two-fold: First, it demonstrates that CVC is a radical pro-drop language. Second, it discusses the structural positions of both overt and null pronouns in the CVC clausal architecture. Extensive field-work (1997, 2000 and 2001) has revealed that CVC is a radical pro-drop language in which the subjects of individual-level and stage-level predicates can be dropped. Null subjects of individual-level predicates are recoverable as 3rd person singular argumental pronouns el or e . In contrast, null subjects of other predicates may be interpreted as 1st/, 2nd o r 3rd person singular or plural. I argue that nonclitics are XPs in Spec-AgrSP, and propose that subject clitics in CVC are syntactic clitics in AgrS that absorb a theta-role and license a pro through a chain transmitting person and number features. Null subjects are then licensed by checking the relevant person feature in AGR.
(University of Georgia)
Functional Categories and Clausal Architecture in Papiamentu
This paper has two objectives: First, to postulate a basic phrasal architecture in Papiamentu by way of developing inventory of functional categories for the language. I will introduce some of the complexities linked to postulating a basic phrase structure in Papiamentu by taking into account a language’s TMA morphology. Secondly, I wish to contribute to the study of functional categories by raising the question "How can the study of basic phrasal architecture in Papiamentu and other Creole languages strengthen our theoretical assumptions concerning the nature of functional categories?"
After establishing a basic IP configuration for Papiamentu, I then propose a basic clausal architecture based on the TMA system. I introduce evidence that suggests Papiamentu is a null subject language due to the presence of pronominal clitics in the language. The ordering of functional categories in the clausal configuration is based on the patterns of distribution of temporal particles, modal auxiliaries and semi-modal auxiliaries from a 5000 word corpus. The empirical evidence presented here suggests that the TMA morphemes in Papiamentu exhibit "multicategorial" status in the grammar raising important theoretical issues with respect to postulating an inventory of functional categories and a subsequent clausal architecture in Papiamentu and Creole languages in general.
(University of Helsinki)
Language contact and interference on Saint Andrews, Providence and Ketlina as perliminaries for the writing of a contrastive grammar Islander ? Caribbean Standard English ? Spanish
In the first part of the paper, the sociohistory and the current sociolinguistic
situation in the archipelago will be presented.
The main part of the paper will focus on concrete interference phenomena occurring between the three languages in contact, an English-based Creole essentially descended from Jamaican, Caribbean Standard English, and Spanish. Important findings are that while Spanish influence on Creole and, by extension or indirectly on Standard English, amounts first and foremost to extensive calqueing (including merged calques), the influence of Creole on English is mainly grammatical in nature. Errors in Spanish can be explained both as Creole interference and as interlanguage phenomena. Usually, they are levelled out by the time students leave high school. However, while older Native Islanders tend to reproduce the prestigious accent of Bogotá, the younger generation is increasingly adopting stigmatized Costeño pronunciations, idioms, etc.
In the final part of the paper, we will compare the results with studies of a historically related Creole speaking community in Puerto Limón, Costa Rica, and we will close with a few remarks about the contrastive grammar we are currently working on.
(Florida International University)
Nasality in Haitian Creole: A process of Linguistic Change
This paper questions the empirical foundation of the classical model of decreolization continuum from the perspective of Haitian Creole Phonology. It examines a phonological process by which a vowel is nasalized when followed by a nasal consonant. Researchers (Tinelli 1974, Fattier 1984, Valdman 1991) have assumed that this process of nasalization constitutes one of the most striking features whereby the linguistic continuum - acrolect/mesolect/basilect - is reflected within Haitian Creole Phonology. According to these works, nasalization occurs more frequently in the speech of bilingual (French/Haitian Creole) speakers as opposed to monolingual (Haitian-Creole) speakers. This paper challenges this view. From an empirical standpoint, it will be shown that nasalization is an unstable process that takes place in the speech of all Haitians regardless of their status as bilingual or monolingual. Some lexical items may undergo nasalization, while others may appear in free variation (nasalized/non-nasalized forms) even when followed by a nasal consonant. There also exists a large number of lexical items that do not undergo nasalization. Such a process remains difficult to account for by rules or general principles and constitutes an "unsurmontable challenge" to previous research that postulate both obligatory rules of nasalization and sociolectal variation. From a theoretical standpoint, there are two basic assumptions in this presentation. First, the unstable nature of the phenomenon of nasal assimilation is due to a process of linguistic change toward nasalization. This coexistence in the lexicon of nasalized, free variation and non-nasalized forms support this claim. Second, nasal vowels in Haitian Creole are a combination of oral vowel/floating nasal consonant. This floating nature of the nasal element allows interactions with both the free variation and the process of linguistic change.
(Portland State University)
Further evidence for a Guinea Pidgin French
This paper presents evidence for the existence of a previously undocumented West African Pidgin French in the Republic of Guinea. It begins by differentiating the several French varieties used by Guinean citizens. At least three different varieties may be identified, as this paper will show. The first is called "Soldier French", the variety used by older individuals who had "joined" the French army. Soldier French is now relatively moribund although it may have provided input to the second variety, "Market French", the focus of the discussion here. The third is "Urban Guinea French", the variety used in Conakry. The new evidence presented here comes from a sociolinguistic survey conducted among the citizens of Kankan, documenting the presence of at least two different varieties in the consciousness of the citizens. The first is the French used at the University of Kankan and by upper echelon government bureaucrats; the second is the French used by drivers and vendors in the market. Differences between the two were clearly evident in speaker attitudes towards the French they spoke and in the forms they used. After summarizing the findings from this survey, the paper concludes by discussing them within the findings of Calvet and his co-workers, e.g., Calvet 1998, and the speech economy of Guinea in general.
The functional architecture of nominal projections in French Lexifier Creoles
The inventory of determiners is remarkably uniform across the French Lexifier Creoles (FLC). Yet despite this uniformity, much variation is observed in their syntactic distribution. Similarities and differences are also observed in the distribution of plural markers, pre-nominal or post-nominal, raising the question of whether a unitary system could be at the basis the nominal structures of FLC. That is, do FLC have a common syntax for their determiner systems or must distinct systems be posited to capture the observed variety? The goal of this paper is to propose a uniform determiner structure for FLC and to explore the consequences of this view for an account of the syntactic distribution of determiners as well as for general considerations on the nature of Creole determiner systems. We motivate a single basic underlying architecture for FLC determiners that conforms to a potentially universal hierarchy of functional nominal projections proposed for other languages in recent years within comparative generative works. The distinct orders, it is argued, follow naturally from transformations governed by the single general principle in (1) and from the idea that similar determiners may differ as to their X’ status across FLC:
(1) Nominal functional heads must have a specifier .
(Wayne State University)
The Provenance of the Zero Copula in AAVE: a new pro-creole analysis
A number of prominent sociolinguists are currently engaged in a tense debate over the issue of whether the zero copula phenomenon in present-day AAVE derives ultimately from a linguistic pattern inherent in Caribbean English-based creoles, or from British English. This paper is a contribution to this conversation. It first reviews the pro-creole arguments of Singler (1991), Baugh (1991), Debose and Faraclas (1993) and Rickford (1999) noting the strengths and weaknesses of their claims. It then analyses studies by Ewers (1996), Poplack (1999), and Walker (2000) all of whom challenge the pro-creole position. Finally the paper proposes a hybrid solution that integrates Rickford's and Singler's arguments to strengthen and support the pro-creole position. It proposes that the current AAVE pattern was a non-copula that evolved to either a dead copula or alive zero copula . This solution works, provided there is the understanding that the decreolizing process is only generally uniform and, consequently, cannot be strictly imposed.
(University of Minnesota)
Garifuna as Contact Language
Garifuna, a language spoken by Afro-Indians (Garinagu) in Central America,
is severely endangered. Although this language has been claimed to be Arawakan
(Taylor 1956), its actual linguistic status is in doubt in view of the
multiple influences that its speakers were subjected to in the course of
their diaspora from South America to Central America. It has developed
over the last five centuries through successive contacts between South
American Indians (Arawakan and Karina speakers), African maroons, French,
British and eventually Spanish and Creole English speakers.
Garifuna reveals extensive French and English influence dating back to early contacts on the island of St Vincent. Surprisingly, no African element was ever identified in Garifuna. The language is now subjected to the dominance of Belizean Creole (in Belize) and Spanish (in Honduras) to the extent that younger generations have in the majority of cases stopped learning it. Older speakers exhibit constant code-switching
The linguistic status of Garifuna will be re-examined in the light of six-month fieldwork conducted in Seine Bight (Belize) and in Punta Gorda (Roatán, Bay Islands of Honduras). Considering its history, Garifuna is a prime candidate for the activation of contact phenomena, perhaps through creolization, so this possibility will be explored in the context of some specific verbal structures.
Nicholas G. Faraclas
(University of Papua New Guinea)
From Old Guinea to Papua New Guinea: A comparative study of Nigerian Pidgin and Tok Pisin
In this paper, the grammatical systems of Nigerian Pidgin (NP) and Tok Pisin (TP) are compared with the goal of measuring the descriptive and explanatory capacity of a universals approach to creole genesis and development versus a substrate/areal approach.
Morphosyntactic features of NP and TP are compared with the structures found in a broad sample of those languages of Southern Nigeria and Melanesia for which grammatical descriptions are available. Each comparison is presented first in tabular form, followed by more in depth analyses.
The results show that the similarities between NP and TP almost invariably correspond to the areas of morphosyntax where there are also typological similarities between the languages of Southern Nigeria and Melanesia. In most cases where NP and TP differ in terms of their grammatical structure and constructions, the languages of Southern Nigeria and Melanesia also differ typologically. These findings underscore the need to consider substratal factors in accounts of pidgin and creole genesis and development.
(Bridgewater State College)
Previous Creolization Hypothesis in Caribbean Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese:
A new comparative perspective on an old controversy
The possibility of an African imprint in the morphology and syntax of Caribbean Spanish (CS) and Brazilian Portuguese (BP) has been seriously questioned over the years, despite general acceptance that the contribution of sub-Saharan Africans can be found in the culture of these regions and in the lexicon of these languages. The linguistic feature analyzed in this study is the lack of number agreement in the noun phrase. CS speakers frequently say [loh amigo] for los amigos ‘the friends’ while Brazilians generally pronounce the phrase os amigos as [uz amigu], repeating a similar pattern of plural marking. The similarities and differences between the two languages are analyzed by comparing data of synchronic studies in Caribbean Spanish (Terrell 1979, 1978; Poplack 1980; Cedergren 1973; Lafford 1982) with data collected from 45 speakers of BP. Results reveal a more morphologically-based phenomenon in Portuguese, while in Spanish, phonological constraints are more likely to be at work. Although education and social class are significant contributors to the rule of /s/ deletion, the phenomenon can be better explained by the contribution of internal factors, such as the position of the plural marker in the noun phrase and the word class of the pluralized item.
Fredric W. Field
(California State University, Northridge)
Presence of superstrate/lexifier and possible long-term effects on an emerging creole
Few researchers would say that a superstrate (lexifier) has no effect on an emerging creole variety, although the ways and degrees to which this influence occurs is a matter of debate. Not all creolists agree on how or even if the superstrate was a target of acquisition, whether creators of creole languages were in the process of learning the speech of their overseers. Based on historical documentation, however, it appears that originators of many creole varieties were adult laborers prior to the advent of children, and not children creating a new language. This suggests that these adults were indeed learning the superstrate non-natively. If so, processes of subsequent language acquisition (SLA) should be evident. One would expect to find evidence in the order that forms were learned and in the sequences in which particular constructions were mastered. Evidence should also exist of the influence of underlying native languages via transfer. In general, the more long-lasting the contact, the more English-like the creole should be. This paper, therefore, takes a look at three English-lexicon creoles, Hawai’ian Pidgin English, Jamaican, and Tok Pisin, whose individual histories involved considerable differences in the amount and kind of exposure to English and its native speakers.
(California State University, Long Beach)
The Interplay of Lexical Tone and Pitch-Accent in English-Derived and Borrowed Words in Krio
A debatable issue in Creole linguistics is the nature of tone marking on words borrowed or derived from English. In some Creoles, proposed to be pitch-accent languages, high tones in words borrowed or derived from stress-accent languages generally coincide with the location of primary stress. There is no consensus as to whether Krio is a pitch-accent language or whether tone assignment is inherent. I propose that monosyllabic and disyllabic borrowed and derived lexical items in Krio are assigned inherent (unpredictable) tone. Tone assignment on borrowed and derived lexical items with three or more syllables may be predictable (i.e. pitch-accented), with High tone general corresponding with the primary or secondary stress that is closest to the end of the word. I further propose a tonal rule of High tone deletion and spreading of Low tone on the initial components of English-derived compounds. Length of a borrowed lexical item (i.e. number of syllables) may determine whether tone is unpredictable (inherent) or predictable (pitch-accent). Also, tone assignment may be predictable but generated by rules different from rules of the source language.
David B. Frank
The St. Lucian Creole Verb Phrase
The verb phrase in St. Lucian French Creole consists of an uninflected verb optionally preceded by one or more particles marking time, mood and aspect. This paper examines the possibilities of co-occurance among the different parts that make up the verb phrase. But then, more importantly, the paper explains the meanings associated with the different forms the verb phrase can take, and by extension, the meanings of the different particles that can precede the verb. Questions: Does the ‘anterior’ marker té in St. Lucian Creole mean the same thing and have the same function as what appears to be basically the same particle in Haitian Creole? Is the structure of the verb phrase basically the same in all Creole languages? While this data-oriented paper does not attempt to answer these questions, it makes reference to the issues and provides a solid analysis of the St. Lucian Creole verb phrase and its meanings that can be used as a basis of comparison with other Creoles. The present study is based on years of field work and a wealth of textual data collected first-hand.
(Ohio State University)
Reduplication: symbiosis between prosody and grammatical structure
Discussions about the phonetic and morpho-phonological properties of
reduplication in Caribbean English Creoles (CECs) are quite rare (e.g.
Devonish ms, LaCharit3 and Kouwenberg 1998). This paper is the first to
combine the results of perception experiments with acoustic analyses in
an effort to shed light on the phonetic properties, of two types of reduplications
in Jamaican Creole (JC), intensive and distributive.
Results from a pilot perception experiment and acoustic analyses confirmed that there are differences (e.g. pitch, duration) between words like swelswel "very swollen" (intensive) and otherwise identical words like swelswel "swollen in different places" (distributive).
Reduplication is just one aspect of Jamaican Creole grammar which demonstrates this delicate/intricate interaction between pitch and grammatical structure. (cf. Lawton (1963) on intonation). This research contributes not only to our understanding of the productivity and scope of reduplication in JC, but also the relationship between the prosodic features and semantic functions of reduplication. It also provides further support for the inter-relatedness between different areas of the JC grammar, in this case, phonetics, phonology and morphology. This emphasizes the fact that individual components of the grammar do not function in isolation but may depend on or affect each other.
(Louisiana State University)
A Tale of Romance in Two Far-Away Lands
A growing number of Creolists believe that creolization does not exist as a linguistically distinctive process. This presentation seeks to ascertain whether this is true by comparing two contact languages, one (Korlai Portuguese) normally considered a creole, the other (Istro-Romanian) not. Both contact languages have a single substrate each (Marathi and Croatian), two languages typologically not unlike one another. Likewise, Portuguese and Romanian are typologically close to one another. Therefore, a theory claiming that no such process as creolization exists would predict these two contact languages to be not unlike on another. Instead, comparison reveals a stark contrast between them: whereas contact with its substrate (Croatian) has made the inflectional morphology of Istro-Romanian more complex than that of Romanian, Korlai Portuguese has lost most of the inflectional endings of Portuguese through contact with its substrate (Marathi). It is concluded that creolization is indeed a linguistic process quite distinct from language change, and which is characterized, inter alia, by the large-scale elimination of inflectional morphology.
Binding Theory and the Morpheme YO in Haitian Creole
Yves Dejean (Personal Communication) argues that while (1) is grammatical, (2) is not:
(1) Li te ba li li.
3sg PST give 3sg 3sg
"He gave it to him."
(2)* Li te ba yo yo.
3sg PST give 3pl 3pl
"He gave them to them."
I argue that the reason for the ungrammaticality in (2) is because the pronominal YO in Haitian Creole is lacking the feature person. As such the two YO come to have the same indexation an violate condition B of the Binding Theory, which states that all pronominals must be free in their governing category.
Evidence for such a claim finds support both in the literature and the language itself. Ritter (1992) argues that Number occupies the head position in a determiner phrase. She supports her argument in a cross linguistic study between Hebrew and Haitian Creole. I demonstrate that the pronominal YO is in complementary distribution with the deictic plural YO, and that they are both the same morpheme? lacking the feature person.
Ritter, Elizabeth. . Cross Linguistic Study of the Number Phrase. 1992. The Canadian Journal of Linguistics, 37, 21, June, 197-218.
(SIL, Nairobi Evangelical School of Theology)
Creole genesis: the nature and use of semantic and lexical evidence
This paper is partly methodological and partly a statement of a position on creole genesis based on two kinds of data?semantic and lexical?drawn chiefly from modern descendants of Surinamese Plantation Creole (SPC). Methodologically, it considers the use of semantic data by writers on the origins of specific creoles and on creole genesis generally, and the uses to which lexical data have been put in arguing for various positions on creole genesis. It develops a set of principles for or valid argumentation from, both semantic and lexical data, many of which have been articulated by various authors elsewhere. Empirically, a study of semantic data from SPC’s descendants supports those "substratist" approaches to creole genesis that attribute the bulk of a creole’s semantic structure to substrate sources. Study of lexical data, where lexemes from various superstrate sources are seen to be distributed across semantic domains and within domains in non-random ways, provides evidence for the validity of the commonly used undefined notion of "basic vocabulary": earlier superstrates contribute more than later superstrates to the phonological shape of what is generally considered "basic" vocabulary, and superstrates more than substrates.
Iskra Iskrova and Albert Valdman
(University of Indiana)
An Optimality Theoretic Account of Nasal in Haitian Creole
Nasality has been for a longtime a central issue in phonological studies of Haitian Creole (HC) in particular and French-based creoles in general. Recently, there has been renewed interest in this issue, witness several studies shading new light (Cadely 2000, 2001; Nikiema 2000). This analysis accounts within an optimality theoretic framework for instances of progressive (a) and regressive assimilation (b) as well as for local (c) and long distance spreading (d). When the feature [nasal] spreads into an available onset position, a structure preserving condition in the language triggers the insertion of a nasal consonant (e). The insertion of a nasal consonant may even take precedence over the insertion of a default consonant that normally shows at specific morphemic boundaries (f).
a. /machãd/ > [machãn] 'to sell'
b. /len/ > [le(n] / [len] 'wool'
c. /va(+a/ > [va(-a(] 'the wind'
d. /ba(k+a/ > [ba(k-la(] 'the bank'
e. / pado(+e/ > [pado(ne(] 'to forgive'
f. /kaba(n+a/ > [kaba(n-na(] / *kaba(n-la( 'the bed'
We show how, in the context of the feature [nasal], the optimal output is selected by the crucial ranking between markedness constraints dealing with nasal agreement and harmony and the loosely met faithfulness constraints.
Megan Jones and Sali Tagliamonte
(University of York [UK] and University of Toronto and University of York [UK])
Linguistic Shipwreck? Preverbal DO and the Southwest connection revisited
We consider the contribution of Southwestern British dialects to the development of preverbal DO, as a Habitual marker in the New World. Earlier work concentrated on similarities in form and semantic function (e.g. Harris, 1986; Rickford, 1986). Yet the underlying grammatical patterning has not been tested on relevant data. We subject preverbal DO, in past temporal reference, to quantitative analyses in two corpora: Somerset English (Jones, 2000) and Samaná English (Poplack and Tagliamonte, 2001).
We test the contribution of factors from the historical record, and those relevant to preverbal DO in Creoles.
In both varieties, the frequency of periphrastic did is 7%. Its occurrence is influenced by adverbial position, clause type, type of verb, verb class, parallel processing and stativity and anteriority of the verb, the effect attested for Creoles. Most striking are clear correspondences between Samaná and Somerset in the ranking of constraints for all of the factors tested.
We argue that the parallels in form, function and constraint hierarchy make it unlikely that they are the products of independent developments. Instead, this appears to be remarkably intact diffusion.
We discuss the implications of these findings for the origins and development of New World contact vernaculars and English-based Creoles.
Christine Jourdan and Rachel Selbach
There’s more to bae than meets the eye!
A series of now classic papers have discussed the putative grammaticalization of the future/irrealis marker (baem)bae in various dialects of Melanesian Pidgin. It was hypothesized (Sankoff&Laberge(73/(80)) that when a pidgin becomes a creole, time marking formerly carried out periphrastically by use of sentence initial adverbs would gradually move closer to the verb, to eventually become grammaticalized as (phonologically reduced) tense marking part of the verb phrase. We here revisit the predictions made by comparing two corpuses collected ten years apart (Jourdan(83) and Jourdan(93)) in the capital of the Solomon Islands, Honiara. This allows us to trace changes in the same urban setting over the period of this time span. While our results do indicate that not only is a complete elimination of bambae in favor of bae underway, but there is also a slight increase in the frequency of the immediate precedence of bae to the VP, we analyse the changes in word order as results of changes in the pronominal system and innovative discourse structures, rather than as evidence of an adverb becoming a tense marker in the evolution from pidgin to creole.
(Ural Pedagogical University, Russia)
Growth of the Lexicon of the Creolized Lingala and Sango
During creolization the vocabulary of the creolized language reduces sometimes very considerably. At a later stage when creolized idioms become multifunctional their vocabularies grow. The new terms in these languages are mainly neologisms. The terminological enrichment of lingala and sango as show our questionnaires as well as some other sources goes two ways: 1) borrowing from the local and European languages; 2) coining of words with the help of the internal language resources. Lingala and sango terms may be classified as: A) primordial; B) neologisms coined by way of widening the meaning of the primordial word; C) borrowings which underwent phonological and morphological assimilation; D) neologisms coined by way of derivation or composition from primordial stems in accordance with the existing models; E) borrowings from both local African languages and other languages which did not undergo any adaptation; F) periphrastic terminological expressions. New terms may be built in accordance with the traditional derivational model, for example in lingala Pr+R+Sf, Pr+R and R+Sf in sango or in accordance with the models of composion N+N, N+ya+N, (ya — possessive particle in lingala), N+tí+N (tí — possessive particle in sango), N+N+N, N+N+N+N, N+V, N+VN+N: A) li-mel-i — aperitif(lingala); bó — collect: bó-ngbì — unite (sango); B) elakisi — model (lingala); kàmátà to arrest (law) (sango); C) fomazi — cheese (lingala); dùteè — tea (sango); D) e-kanis-eli — philosophy, n-dako ya ma-pinga — Staff, manáka mo-sala — program, moi-nzela-lombongo — capitalist (lingala); sàrà — to scratch oneself: s_r_ — itch, wà-s_ndá-gb_-ngú — oceanographer, wà-m_nd_ng_-yé — student (sango); E) falasa — horse (<swahili), wikend(i) — weekend (< English) (lingala); dúníà — universe (<Arab), F) motambwisi mpepo azali komeka mpepo — pilot (the one who makes the aircraft fly) (lingala); zò só à íngà tí hùrù — pilot (person that he (she) knows to fly) (sango). All composite terms may be considered as such on the assumption of them being a) asyndetic and endocentric and b) syndetic and exocentric.
Andrew J. Koontz-Garboden and J. Clancy Clements
(Stanford University and Indiana University)
Adpositions in Spanish and Portuguese-based creoles
Although adpositions have received significant attention in the pidgin/creole literature as they relate to serial verbs (Boretzky 1983, Byrne 1984), less attention has been paid to them from a crosslinguistic/typological perspective. Such research is potentially important in light of current controversies surrounding the typological status of creoles (cf. McWhorter 1998, Degraff 2000), and can shed light on the process of creolization in general. The present study makes a small contribution to this broader debate by offering a typological examination of adpositions in fourteen Spanish and Portuguese-based creoles of the Americas, Africa, and Asia.
Descriptive grammars and linguists were consulted to compile lists of the adpositional lexical items used to express the following semantic relations (from Baxter 1988, Clements 1996) in the creoles under study: accusative/theme, dative/recipient, benefactive, locative, goal/directional, genitive, source, cause, instrument, comitative, and temporal. The comparative study reveals that certain semantic relations (e.g. instrumental) are lexically encoded more homogenously across the sample than others (e.g. causative), despite the common lexical source of the creoles. This suggests that certain semantic roles may be encoded earlier in the process of pidginization/creolization, while others may be formed subsequent to this process, allowing for language independent development, and explaining the observed heterogeneity.
(Université du Québec à Montréal)
What you see is not always what you get: Apparent simplicity and hidden complexity in creole languages
McWhorter (in press) makes two strong claims: First, the world’s simplest grammars are creole grammars, and second, creole grammars constitute a synchronically identifiable typological class. In this paper, I provide an alternative way of addressing these issues within the framework of the relexification account of creole genesis in Lefebvre (1998) and the references therein. First, I argue that creole languages do not constitute a typological class and that what creole languages really have in common is the process by which they come about. Second, I show that the isolating character of creoles is derivable from the way functional category lexical entries acquire a label in creole genesis (Lefebvre and Lumsden 1989). Third, I show that, due to constraints associated with the process of relexification, there are more covert lexical entries in creole languages than in their substratum languages (Lefebvre and Lumsden 1994a, b; Lumsden 1995). This explains why creole languages tend to look simpler. Fourth, I address McWhorter’s hypothesized creole typological features in light of the previous discussion and show that, on the one hand, Haitian provides counterexamples to some of the features, and that, on the other hand, the other features proposed by McWhorter are derivable from a sound theory of how creole languages come about.
Charles C. Mann
(University of Surrey, UK)
Attitudes towards Anglo-Nigerian Pidgin in urban, southern Nigeria: The generational variable
A questionnaire- and interview-based survey of attitudes toward Anglo-Nigerian
Pidgin1 (ANP) was undertaken on a stratified random sample of 1,200 respondents
in six urban centres in southern Nigeria, in relation to perceptions of
its language status, possible use as a subject and medium of instruction,
and possible adoption as an official language in the future, given its
ever-increasing vitality and preponderance.
This paper analyzes and discusses the findings on the age group/generational variable, which was one of eight variables tested for in the survey, the others being: gender; ethnic group; linguality; occupation; age of contact; source of contact; and, ANP competence.
The ramifications and implications of these findings on the age group/generational variable are discussed, in relation to the future status, development and spread of ANP.
1. Anglo-Nigerian Pidgin (ANP), or ‘Nigerian Pidgin English’, is an endogenous, Atlantic pidgin, which evolved from contacts between the diverse tribal peoples on the coastlines of part of the-then ‘slave coast’ (present-day Nigeria), and, principally, Portuguese sailors (15th century) and British traders, missionaries and colonial officials (especially from the 18th century).
Papimentu’s Struggle for Final Recognition
The first part of the article describes the negative influences that the colonial dependency on Holland had on the education in Curaçao. It has pushed Papiamentu, the majority language of Curaçao since more than two hundred years, completely aside as a language of instruction.
Only some 10% of the ( mainly Dutch speaking) youth is served by this situation. For the majority of schoolgoing children it forms a great impediment causing a high percentage of repeaters and drop-outs both in elementary and secondary education, and promoting a high crime rate amongst adolescents. Ironically this forms a continuous source of irritation between Holland and Curaçao as of late this lost and crime committing youth has been finding the road to Amsterdam, creating there a harshly operating Cosa Nostra.
The second part of the article deals with the counter movements to this situation. It zeroes in particularly on the one school that managed to obtain Papiamentu as language of instruction, the "Kolegio Erasmo". It set off with kindergarten and and primary school in 1987 and has added since 1997 a highschool with four classes. The school’s survival will be vital for the modernization of the education in Curaçao and the total recognition of Papiamentu which is present in the island since mid seventheen century.
(University of Hawai’i at Hilo)
The protolanguage hypothesis and superstructure: A creolistic insight into the language evolution
Advocating an explicit discrepancy between an early-stage pidgin and a full-fledged creole language, the protolanguage hypothesis claims that the linguistic form of an early hominid, home erectus, is most likely a pidgin-like rudimentary language. On the other hand, the language of our direct ancestor, home sapiens, should have been the archetypal form of human language that resembles creoles. This paper argues that the early-stage pidgins and full-blown creoles are also of different kinds in their discourse. The narrative superstructure of creoles is rule governed. However, the narratives in pidgins reveal rather conventionalized formations of discourse that are heavily dependent on the extralinguistic factors. This research concludes that the protolanguage hypothesis is right in that there are two linguistic systems in the course of evolution: protolanguage and archetypal language. While the former is formed under an overwhelming pressure for communication, the latter comes into existence when the abstract mental system for the grammatical representation is created. The human language could not have evolved just through the adaptation of pre-existing communication systems. The birth of the human language must have been triggered by the innovation of more complex internal systems that realize the high-level mental functions within the brain.
(University of Cape Town)
Nguni pidgin (Fanakalo) versus Nguni (Xhosa and Zulu) interlanguages.
An important unresolved issue in creolistics and SLA studies is that although the outcomes of pidginisation and SLA are distinct, it is difficult, in the earliest stages, to differentiate an interlanguage from a pidgin in the making. Much of the literature in SLA on pidgin-interlanguage overlaps and the stages of interlanguage acquisition is based on English as target language/superstrate. Fanakalo gives us a chance of examining acquisition processes from "the other side", with an African language (Zulu or Xhosa) as superstrate/TL and Germanic languages (English, Afrikaans) as substrates. This paper examines the overlaps and major differences between Fanakalo and Nguni interlanguages (fossilised at various stages), drawing on earlier descriptions of Fanakalo and on the work of J. Marshall on the Xhosa of eastern Cape English farming communities. In addition I examine the interlanguage and pidgin of a speaker from KwaZulu-Natal.
More specifically one could ask whether there is a mirror image effect when people with a `standard average European' background encounter agglutinating African (Bantu) languages? My paper examines the ff in Fanakalo pidgin and in NSL (Nguni as a second language): noun class markers and concord; tense; copula; articles. I conclude that though there are some overlaps between pidgin and SLA that on the whole they can be differentiated.
(Goethe-Universität-Frankfurt am Maim)
Social and linguistic practices in a kuutu
The aim of the present paper is to investigate the linguistic practices typical of a formal events, the kuutu 'important socio-political deliberations', in the Eastern Maroon community. The language use in a kuutu is considered respectful and skillful. The aim is to discuss controversial and delicate issues in a non- confrontational and polite manner. The most distinctive features of kuutu- speech are that (1) speakers avoid interrupting each other, (2) speakers (takiman) select someone (pikiman) from among the persons present to guide (i.e. ritually respond to) his verbal contribution (piki a taki), (3) speakers make use of rich verbal metaphors (nongo) accessible to only those who have a firm knowledge of EM culture to present and to give import to their opinions and (4) speakers actively avoid offensive language. The data come from observations and recordings of a number of kuutu among the Pamaka.
Thomas B. Morton
(University of Pennsylvania)
*Intervocalic /d/ > [r] in Palenquero Spanish
The variable flapping of intervocalic /d/ in Spanish (hígaro ~ hígado ‘liver’, perazo ~ pedazo ‘piece’) is identified with Afro-Latin Americans (Cuervo 1955, Flórez 1951, Granda 1977, Montes 1985, Lipski 1985, Megenney 1990, 1983, Schwegler 1991). Lipski (1994) considers intervocalic /d/ > [r] among a short list of items he deems worthy of further consideration as possible African influence on Latin American Spanish pronunciation. He notes that same pronunciation is currently found in Equatorial Guinea, an officially Spanish-speaking African nation. In Latin America [it] is found among monolingual Spanish speakers in regions with prolonged African presence (Lipski 1994). In a recent unpublished overview of the Spanish of El Palenque de San Basilio, Schwegler and Morton (2000) confirm that flapping of intervocalic /d/ may vary with the more standard variants ([*] and [ø]) in Palenquero Spanish.
A closer analysis of recorded samples of Palenquero Spanish reveals that flapped /d/ occurs most frequently in certain elderly. This paper proposes that the flapping of intervocalic /d/ in PS is the result of centuries-long contact with the local Spanish based Palenquero creole language. This finding has implications for hypotheses concerning the history of this and other linguistic phenomenon in further Black enclaves of Latin America.
Carol Myers-Scotton and Janice L. Jake
(University of South Carolina and Midlands Technical College)
Sources of Inflections: Testing the Creole System Morpheme Hypothesis
Even though creoles largely are constructed out of morphemes from the superstrate, only certain types of superstrate morphemes occur. Few late system morphemes from the superstrate occur; they are structurally assigned to index elements (e.g. subject-verb agreement) or to build larger constituents (e.g. possessive of). This paper tests the Creole System Morpheme Hypothesis: Late system morphemes from the superstrate are not available in creoles to function as late system morphemes. Instead, content morphemes are re-configured to meet the requirements of the creole morphosyntactic frame. This hypothesis is tested against quantified data from several English-based pidgins/creoles. For example, in Nigerian Pidgin English, the English content morpheme there (locative adverb) occurs, reanalyzed as a late system morpheme in the creole frame. It serves as the existential copula (de): di m?ni de "there is money" (Faraclas 1996: 222). However, existential there (a late system morpheme) does not occur in pidgins/creoles. The differential constraints on content morphemes from the superstrate vs. those on late system morphemes are evident of a basic division in morpheme type and how morphemes are accessed in language production.
(Universitÿt des Saarlandes?Germany)
The expression of reflexivity in "French-based" Creoles
It is still a matter of research which structural or functional restrictions underlie the diverse reflexive constructions in specific creole languages (cf Carden/Stewart 1988, Corne 1988, 1989, Carden 1993, Muysken/Smith 1995, Heine 2001).
In my analysis based on data of several "French-based" creole languages I will show, that the choice of the "appropriate" reflexive construction between the different options depends on various converging aspects: on the semantics and the valency-structure of the verb, on the register used (e.g. spoken versus written), on lexicalization matters and on the discourse context.
In the (basilectal) Creoles there is no element whose only function is to mark reflexivity, like se in French, i.e. beside their reflexive meaning the elements used in the reflexive construction convey at least one other function. In my talk I want to present the range of functions of the elements used in the reflexive constructions and I want to show the (cognitive, structural) links between these different functions.
The aim of my paper is to give a structured overview of the options and (distribution) restrictions with regard to the construction of reflexivity in the "French-based" Creole languages. Furthermore, the "functional paradigm" of these reflexive elements and its place within the grammar will be presented.
Peter L. Patrick and Esther Figueroa
(University of Essex and Juniroa Productions)
The meaning of kiss-teeth
We explore previously-unresolved problems of meaning for Kiss-teeth (KST), an everyday Caribbean oral gesture. Similar forms, examples of African cultural continuity across the Diaspora, are often overlooked despite continuing interest in historical links between Caribbean Creoles and African communication systems. Dictionary entries treat them as lexical items, providing overlapping lists of affective states (Òscorn, impatienceÓ) for related entries (suck-teeth, chups, etc.). But the meaning of (KST) is not a single semantic unit, while lists are incomplete, contingent and inadequate. We distinguish ideophones from metalinguistic labels; consider geographical distribution and diffusion of both functions and particular forms; and analyze related signs as a set, for shared pragmatic function. (KST) is inherently evaluative, an inexplicit oral gesture with a sound-symbolic component and remarkably stable functions across the Diaspora: an interactional resource with multiple possibilities for sequential organization, used to negotiate moral positioning among speakers and referents, and closely linked to community norms, expectations of conduct, and attitude. It participates in a system of indirect discourse, requiring co-construction of intention by speaker/hearers. It functions in personal narratives to mark both internal and external evaluation, sometimes ambiguously. Proposed functions are illustrated with data ranging from historical to contemporary, oral to literary, monologic to interactional.
Jorge E. Porras
(Sonoma State University)
Temporal distance and discourse reference in Palenquero
This paper presents an analysis of the roles (both linguisticc and pragmatic) temporal distance elements and discourse referents play in the referential component of Palenquero grammar, in contexts beyond the scope of the sentence. First, a set of (oral) narrative discourse samples are chosen. Selection of texts is made according to their ability to exhibit functional features (either grammatical, cognitive, deictic, or expressive), that characterize Palenquero.discourse. Then, a comparison to the lexifier is made in order to identify convergent/divergent areas.
Essentially, this study examines acknowledged claims that Creole grammars (such as Palenquero's) are distinct from those of other languages (such as Spanish), and determine which (if any) of these differences are present at the discourse level. To achieve this goal, two correlated domains are considered, temporal distance (i.e realis and irrealis interpretations as functions of TMA categories), and discourse reference (i. e. the way pronominal and anaphoric expressions are bound within a context situation and what is their role as functions of grammatical units such as discourse markers.
This study shows that parameters of syntactic cohesion and semantic coherence of sentences in Palenquero discourse are basically similar to those of its natural lexifier, Spanish, with differences only existing at a local morpho-syntactic level.
Nicolas Quint and Mafalda Mendes
(L.L.A.C.A.N., C.N.R.S.(Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)Verbalis Computaçâo & Linguagem and Verbalis Computaçâo & Linguagem)
Making the First Standard Portuguese/Cape Verdean Dictionary: A Technical and Linguistic Challenge
Today, in the Republic of Cape Verde (Africa) and in the Capeverdean
diaspora, two languages are in daily use :
• Capeverdean, a Portuguese-based Creole language, is the mother tongue of the great majority of Capeverdean people.
• Portuguese, the official language of Cape Verde, dominates almost exclusively in written contexts and at school.
The development of written Creole seems highly desirable, for cultural and educational reasons, but this implies the existence of adequate reference materials, such as dictionaries.
Our Capeverdean, Portuguese, French team is in the process of constructing the first standard Portuguese-Capeverdean dictionary. This task is quite a challenge from many points of view :
1. technically, because of the scarcity of economic and human resources.
2. linguistically, because of the numerous problems arising from the non-standardised status of the Capeverdean language such as : choice of a reference variety (which dialect/ sociolect?), production of neologisms (for example, how can we translate bar code in Capeverdean?).
In this presentation, we will explain in detail the difficulties we encountered, and the solutions and methodology we developed to solve them, resorting to examples taken from our dictionary, which is due to be completed by December 2001.
(North Carolina State University)
Reexamining Isolation within Isolation: New Evidence from Abaco Island, The Bahamas
Sociolinguists have increasingly recognized the importance of the individual, in terms of shaping community speech norms and initiating language change which impacts understanding of the ideology of identity and factors associated with language innovation, accommodation, and maintenance on the community level.
The Afro-Bahamian community of Sandy Point in Abaco, Bahamas, maintains a unique variety of English with some creole patterning that is distinctive from white-enclave speech norms. Previous research has suggested individual identity may be strong enough to perpetuate an ethnic variety of English even by a single family in an ethnically dominant community. In Sandy Point, there remains a lone lifelong white resident (called Sainty).
Examining a diagnostic set of phonological variables and copula absence demonstrates that Sainty shows no vestiges of Anglo-Bahamian norms. His accommodation of salient and non-salient Afro-Bahamian norms may be an attempt to build solidarity with community members. Sainty’s usage levels exceed those found in Afro-Bahamian English. A reexamination of data presented in Wolfram, Hazen, and Tamburro (1997) shows that this pattern is also exhibited the last remaining African American on Ocracoke. This pattern of Òhyper-accommodationÓ may arise from compounded social and geographical isolation as well as the sociopsychological dynamics of language accommodation and identity.
John Rickford and Devyani Sharma
Creole/AAVE copula patterning as evidence of L2 learning effects?
A solid finding in the AAVE/Creole English literature is the quantitative patterning of English copula/auxiliary absence according to predicate type. A following future or progressive is associated with the highest rates of copula absence, for instance, while a following Noun Phrase is associated with the lowest. Some scholars have contended that in AAVE this reflects prior creolization, and that the creole pattern represents potential influence from West African languages. A recent challenge to this view proposes that the AAVE pattern corresponds to general patterns of imperfect second language learning, perhaps with other creolization influences. In this paper, we argue that the conditioning of copula absence according to predicate type in AAVE and Creole varieties is distinct from the pattern found in second language learning data. This observation is supported by new L2 acquisition data on copula absence among Indian L2 speakers of English in California, as well as other L2 acquisiton data. These findings challenge the assumption that there is a "universal" order of English copula acquisition by predicate type and that this order could be the source of the robust creole and AAVE patterns.
Sarah J. Roberts
The role of identity and style in creole development: Evidence from Hawaiian Creole
According to available evidence, Hawai’i Creole English (HCE) emerged as a language increasingly distinct from Hawai’i Pidgin English (HPE) and Standard American English (SAE) between the 1900s and 1930s, and its development predominantly involved locally-born children and adults. A significant proportion of the locally born were school-educated in SAE, and the existence of a fairly SAE-divergent basilect is somewhat unexpected by ‘limited access’ models of creole formation. In this paper I consider how linguistic ideology and group identity, factors which bear more directly on social motivation (Irvine 1996; Irvine & Gal 2000), may have influenced the development of creole ‘continua’ — dimensions of linguistic variation which (in the group and individual) converge with and diverge from the idealized speech of in-group and out-group identity categories (cf. Bell 1984, 1997).
Hegemonic discourse at the turn of the last century stressed the importance of ‘American’ identity for Asian, Portuguese, and Hawaiian locally born, which promoted the shift from ancestral languages to HCE. SAE however indexed ‘Haole’ (white) identity, and the use of styles which too closely resembled SAE in in-group contexts frequently invited taunts such as ‘black/sunburned Haole,’ ‘highbrow, ‘hi-hat,’ which project the Haole/non-Haole division within the locally-born category. HCE also indexed ‘male’ identity and males similarly using SAE were teased as ‘sissies.’
(University of Pennsylvania)
Divergence, drift, and substrate: the evolution of focus in three Pacific Creoles
This paper deals with the microevolution of the syntax and pragmatics
of focus in three closely related Pacific creoles: Bislama (BLM) in Vanuatu;
Solomon Islands Pijin (SIP), and New Guinea Tok Pisin (NGTP). During the
first decades of their 130-year history, they shared a common origin in
the plantation system of the southwestern Pacific. This plantation
pidgin diversified as it underwent separate developments in the home islands
of returned plantation workers.
The focus system in all three languages involves a set of particles occurring to the right of the focused element: nomo in BLM, nao in SIP, and yet in NGTP. As a relatively marked feature, this grammatical pattern seems easily attributable to substrate influence. However, the particles themselves, even when apparently based on English etyma, are different across the languages. This argues for a separate evolution once the common 19th century plantation pidgin gave way to the three contemporary sister languages. The puzzle is why, given independent evolution, the structure is so similar. A discourse-to-syntax (or "grammaticalization") explanation for the emergence of these particles can be reconciled with the classical view of substrate influence in languages in contact.
Cohorts and Creoles, Peers and Pidgins: Second Language Acquisition of Linguistic Minority Students
Most second language acquisition (SLA) research has been predicated on the assumption that learners are targeted on the standard dialect of the L2. However, in the case of the junior high school children in my study, I argue that the target language is not Standard English, nor the variety of classroom English that is spoken by their teachers. Rather, data analysis suggests they have chosen the language of their peers as their target. Their classroom peers, however, are language learners themselves. The language learning environment and the linguistic outcome have striking similarities to the process of pidginization. Unlike traditional pidgin speakers, however, the children in my study are not fluent speakers of a first language. The children I observed are no longer able to speak the native language of their parents, and report that there is an often devastating breakdown in communication between parent and child because of what has been called "first language attrition". In sum, this research critically examines the notion of language loss and language learning from a traditional SLA perspective while considering, instead, the process of pidginization in examining the language that these children are acquiring in school.
(University of California, Irvine)
Reconsidering the evidence: Bare nouns in Palenquero and what they really mean
Specialists of Palenquero (Colombia) correctly note that the PL noun phrase differs in fundamental ways from the Spanish lexifier. These same specialists report that (1) the (supposedly invariable) zero form always functions as the singular definite article (e.g., ombe ‘THE man’) or as a modifier of generic and mass nouns (ombe ‘man [in general], mankind’), and (2) ma ‘definite particle’ and un ma ‘indefinite particle’ regularly mark the plural, thereby yielding a system in which only the singular allows bare nouns.
This paper will argue that this traditional analysis is incorrect. In my account, the Palenquero system takes as point of departure the "unmarked zero form" (i.e., the bare nominal form without the determiner) ? a form that is entirely neutral in terms of (a) number and (b) definiteness. Under this revised analysis,
(1) bare nouns ? the base forms ? can have singular or plural, and definite
or indefinite meanings;
(2)the interpretation of a bare noun as singular, plural, definite, and indefinite is driven entirely by context;
(3) the markers un, ma, and un ma merely add optional information whose main purpose is to eliminate ambiguity; and
(4) in Palenquero there exists no predictable correlation between the co-occurrence of bare nouns and reference type.
(University of California, Los Angeles)
Miscommunicating with tourists on the Panamanian island of Bastimentos: Language ideologies and patterns of language choice
This paper employs the concept of language ideologies to account for patterns of language choice among Creole English-speaking residents of Bastimentos and tourists visiting the Western Caribbean island. Data from spontaneous discourse are used as a means to analyze speakers’ metalinguistic and metapragmatic awareness of language choice in resident/tourist interactions, resident/resident discussions of tourist encounters, and tourist/tourist discussions of resident encounters. The fact that resident/tourist interaction is frequently characterized by miscommunication suggests that the coexistence of two discrete systems on the island, Bastimentos Creole and Spanish, has confounded the search for a lingua franca in this type of encounter. Analysis of speakers’ metalinguistic and metapragmatic awareness of the role of language choice in establishing and maintaining a new type of social contact, however, reveals that the creole is becoming the more powerful code in this particular context as a result of the influx of English-speaking tourists.
Arthur K. Spears
Conceptualizing Creole Grammar in a "Diglossic" Society
Research on the verbal systems of French-lexifier creoles in Caribbean societies, traditionally considered as diglossic, shows that formal equivalence (as a function of phonology, morphology and syntax) can mask significant semantic/pragmatic differences. Verbal systems in use in one society, though formally identical (inconsequential details aside) may actually reveal two or perhaps more verbal systems in putatitively one and the same creole (cf. Pfander 2000). Focusing on Haitian, at least two systems can be distinguished: what we may call H-Haitian and L-Haitian. The examination of written texts from the popular media (Howe, Haiti Progres) demonstrate that H-Haitian is not governed by the same semantic/pragmatic rules that account for L-Haitian in naturally occurring speech. Thus, there is a Haitian/French cline with at least one definable in between variety. This forces us to reconsider the concept of diglossia, which has informed so much sociolinguistic research.
(University of Papua New Guinea)
Phonemic Status of /p/ and /f/ in Tok Pisin
Most of the past works like Mihalic (1957), Wurm (1971), and Verhaar
(1995) recognised /p/ and /f/ as separate phonemes in Tok Pisin. This is
rightly so, since in most of the Tok Pisin words the phonemic status of
these sounds is clear. For example:
However, the sounds [p] and [f] also occur in free variation in Tok
Pisin. This is evident in the following words.
pis ~ fis 'fish'
paia ~ faia 'fire'
popela ~ fopela 'four'
tupela ~ tufela 'two'
opis ~ ofis 'office'
The explanation offered for this has been that, the occurrence of these
sounds in free variation is not rule governed and that most of these occurrences
With Tok Pisin becoming more as a Creole language, numerous changes are taking place in its phonology and grammar. New observations and descriptions of these changes are needed to report the actual changes the language is undergoing.
This paper will attempt to describe the current phonemic status of /p/ and /f/. It will specifically show that /p/ and /f/ are now being used less and less in free variation in words like the above. The different factors influencing this usage will be discussed. This will include factors like level of English education and the geographical region the speakers originally come from. The paper will also show that the re-analysis of /p/ and /f/ has implications on the dialect differences reported by Mulhausler (1979), which were based largely on the geographical lexical differences. The phonological evidence may be used to re-classify the various dialectal variations that are evolving, with each geographical region having its own significant phonological features.
(Ohio State University)
"Structural constraints on contact-induced change: Borrowing vs "substratum influence"
This paper examines the structural constraints that regulate the processes of "borrowing" as opposed to "L1 influence" or "transfer" in L2 acquisition. I argue that, while certain principles (e.g, transparency) apply in both cases, different constraints are involved.
Borrowing is subject to very strict constraints based on typological similarity. Evidence for this comes from various cases of contact between maintained minority languages and a dominant host language. Cases of structural convergence involve the agency of both recipient (rl) and source language (sl) speakers. Hence they fail to conform to the usual constraints on structural borrowing.
Sl agency plays an even greater role in creole formation and "natural" SLA, leading to more structural diffusion. To understand the constraints on L1 influence in these cases, we must focus on the strategies involved in the restructuring process that creates both creoles and interlanguage varieties.
Degree of congruence between source and recipient languages plays a different role here than in borrowing. Apparent congruence can lead to reanalysis of L2 forms in terms of L1 functional categories. But structural mismatch plays an equally important role, especially at the level of syntax. L1 retention in these cases is often triggered by greater typological distance and limited access to TL input.
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SPCL presenters must submit a short abstract for photoreproduction and publication in the 2002 LSA Meeting Handbook. The short abstract must include the author(s) name, academic affiliation, and title, and the text must not exceed 200 words. Please submit abstracts in Word format and send as an attachment or within email to email@example.com before October 10, 2001. Format for abstract is given below:
FORMAT FOR ABSTRACTS:
Abstract(not to exceed 200 words)
All abstracts and the program will be on the website by October 24, 2001.
The titles of all papers will appear in the October 2001 LSA Bulletin. The Bulletin will be published in late October and will be available at the LSA website at that time. The abstracts will appear in the 2002 LSA Meeting Handbook which will be given out to all registered participants.
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