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Language & Geography

Based on chapter 8 (Trudgill)
by

Tricia Terzaghi

on 17 June 2013

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Transcript of Language & Geography

FIELD DOMINANCE
musical terms
LANGUAGE AND GEOGRAPHY
sporting terms
E.g. adagio / allegro / crescendo
E.g. football / goal / corner
... are of Italian origin
... are of English origin
Terms connected with
Pop music
and Jazz also
tend to be English
Borrowing takes place:
through the medium of the bilingual individuals who are becoming increasingly common as the result of the use of English as a LINGUA FRANCA
LINGUA FRANCA
A term to refer to an auxiliary language
used to enable routine communication to take place between groups of people who speak different native languages

English is the world's most common Lingua Franca followed by French, but other languages are also widely used.
Due to the former world

political
economical
educational dominance of Britain
scientific and similar dominance
of the USA
Lingua-francas, pidgins, or creoles are significant to geography because each represents a long history of communication between various groups of people and is an important gauge of what was taking place at the time the language developed. Today, lingua francas especially but also pidgins represent an attempt to create universally understood languages in a world with growing global interactions.
Dialectology
(from Greek , dialektos, "talk, dialect"; and -, -logia).

This sub-field of Sociolinguistics "(...) is the search for spatially and geographically determined differences in various aspects of language." (B. Spolsky, 1998)
REGIONAL
DIALECTS
LINGÜISTIC
INNOVATIONS
Geographical
Features
Distance
Barriers
geographical
Montevideo
San José
Colonia
The most likely setting for the crystallization of a true pidgin language is probably a contact situation of this limited type involving three or more language groups: one 'dominant' language and at least two 'non-dominant' languages.
A pidgin is created and used in a specific place for basic needs
It is a language that is born from the mixture of many languages
Pidgin is a term used in Sociolinguistics to refer to a language with a reduced grammatical structure, lexicon and stylistic range
Pidgins become creolized when they become the mother-tongue of a community
Pidgins are not haphazard mixtures, not are they 'bad', 'debased' or 'corrupt' forms of the languages from which they are derived
Although rather different from other languages, pidgins are really different in degree rather than in kind
Pidgins are formed by, at least, two mutually unintelligible speech communities attempting to communicate
PIDGIN
CREOLE
Creole languages are pidgins that have acquired native speakers

The language will re acquire all the characteristics of a full, non-pidgin language.

Creole languages are normal and natural languages, only their history is unusual
Of European-based creole languages-those that have developed out of pidgins based on European languages- the best known are:
French creoles:
English creoles:
They are a consequence of the slave trade.

Some languages are spoken as a mother tongue and at the same time as a lingua franca in the same area.


Sometimes mutual intelligibility between a creole and the standard language is nil. Those creole languages may be related but they are different from the languages they derive.
French
English
Portuguese
Spanish
Caribbean and adjoining areas
Indian Ocean
Haiti
Trinidad
and
Grenada
French
Guiana
Louisiana
(USA)
Mauritious
Seychelles
Surinam
(Dutch Guiana)
Jamaica
social
An interesting feature of creole languages related to European languages is the similarities they share with one another:

Verb structure mark continuous aspect without marking tense
E.g.:
Jamaican Creole
/wa de go happen nou/
‘What’s going to happen now?’
Sranan /mi de kom/
‘I’m coming’
The continuous aspect is marked by a particle before the verb
social
Language
barriers
geographical
Germans
uvular r
Danes
French
LINGUISTIC AREAS
Language can spread

•Person to person
•Group to group
•Speakers travel themselves


Travel speakers of different languages communicate by LINGUA FRANCA.
Language used as lingua franca undergoes a certain amount of:

•Simplification
•Reduction in social function

LINGUA FRANCA is subject to the introduction of errors through:

•Interference from native language of the speaker
•Imperfect learning

When little or no formal schooling takes place, simplification and reduction are larger.
"[They] refer to areas where several languages are spoken which, although they are not necessarily very closely related, have a number of features in common." (Trudgill p. 173)
How can the similarities, both of structure and grammar, between these languages be explained?

There are two explanations:


Universal principles of simplification
that keep some structures more than others ( loss of redundant features, some structures are more easier to learn)
‘Relexification theory’
The first widespread European-based pidgin was Portuguese pidgin (15th century-West African Coast)

The Portuguese then spread it to their other trading posts and colonies in Africa and Asia

Traders from other countries started to learn it

When French and English entered the trade (especially the slave trade) relexification of this Portuguese pidgin took place.

The grammar remained the same but the words were replaced by words from English and French, etc.
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