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Englishes in Contact

Pidgins and Creoles

Thomas Staats

on 23 October 2012

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Transcript of Englishes in Contact

Language created for a specific situation Could be government or economic, Language lasts as long as the situation does The language is a mix of the main language and the secondary language Pidgin Pidgins usually have limited vocabulary (Lexicon) and reduced grammatical structure (Syntax) and are, to some extent less official or as strong as a Creole A Creole is a permanent Pidgin Where it has existed for
a couple of generations and so becomes official Or if the economic or Government situation becomes permanent. Creole Pidgins and Creoles Nobodies native language, usually generated when 2 groups are divided by language barrier Englishes in Contact Pidgins and Creoles in society Pidgins and Creoles exist all over the world,
The one we will look at is... Language of commerce, spoken along the West African coast
During the period of the Atlantic slave trade (16-19th Century) "West African Pidgin English"
"Guinea Coast Creole English" Initially developed for trade between English Merchants and local African traders Highly valued as allowed trade and the language spread up the river on trade routes like a WIldfire

Was adopted as a native language by new communities of Africans and mixed-race people living in coastal slave trading bases In this case, There was a situation where a language was needed, to trade, to which a Pidgin was tailored.

Once the Pidgin took off and became more permanent and established and the situation continued, this variety became a Creole. The negatives of having a Pidgin:

- requires the community involved to learn the variety

- pidgins are built of the lexicon of one language and structure from the other

- can get negative transfer where the person's first language knowledge mixes with the similar pidgin language or second language The Positives of having a Pidgin:

- allows 2 different groups of people divided by language difference to communicate

- this allows communication hence trading, business and if in a economic situation, can stimulate the economy by allowing commerce etc.

- promotes literacy So hope you've got an idea what the differences are between Pidgins and Creoles, an real world example and the pro's and con's :) Now split into groups of 4 people or thereabouts for the first activity Pidgins and Creoles are 'Contact Languages' where a main language backed by economic, government or social power happens to come into contact with another 'minor' language. The need to communicate, hence why we have languages in the first place, is still present and the natural thing to happen is a compromise language
The idea of Global English is that English is being used for worldwide communication. Communities do not want to lose their identity or language so keep their own and create this new variety
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