Browsing by Subject "language contact"

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  • Nevalainen, Terttu; Säily, Tanja; Vartiainen, Turo (2020)
    This issue of the Journal of Historical Sociolinguistics aims to contribute to our understanding of language change in real time by presenting a group of articles particularly focused on social and sociocultural factors underlying language diversification and change. By analysing data from a varied set of languages, including Greek, English, and the Finnic and Mongolic language families, and mainly focussing their investigation on the Middle Ages, the authors connect various social and cultural factors with the specific topic of the issue, the rate of linguistic change. The sociolinguistic themes addressed include community and population size, conflict and conquest, migration and mobility, bi- and multilingualism, diglossia and standardization. In this introduction, the field of comparative historical sociolinguistics is considered a cross-disciplinary enterprise with a sociolinguistic agenda at the crossroads of contact linguistics, historical comparative linguistics and linguistic typology.
  • Di Garbo, Francesca; Kashima, Eri; Napoleão de Souza, Ricardo; Sinnemäki, Kaius (Officinaventuno, 2021)
    nuova serie
    This paper presents the building blocks of a comprehensive framework for the typological study of linguistic adaptation, i.e. how languages change in relation to the socio-historical and environmental contexts in which they are used. We showcase a battery of concepts and methods that are geared towards systematically comparing sociolinguistic environments and linguistic structures through the study of communities in social contact. We show that these concepts and methods can be used to investigate sociolinguistic correlates of linguistic diversity and language change in at least three ways: (1) to unravel causal factors related to language change, (2) to create datasets simultaneously addressing selection of communities, sociolinguistic features, and linguistic features, and (3) to formulate generalizations from empirically-grounded cross-cultural and cross-linguistic comparisons.
  • Lindstedt, Jouko (De Gruyter Mouton, 2018)
    Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs
  • Khachaturyan, Maria (2020)
    The focus of the paper is a study of cultural and linguistic contact in West Africa, especially in the domain of religion. Through an analysis of historical layers of some Arabic borrowings in three languages of the region, Manding, Kpelle and Mano, as well as social contexts in which language contact and vocabulary transmission may have occurred, the paper presents a reconstruction of the way Arabic lexicon came to shape Christian (and especially Catholic) lexicon of Kpelle and Mano. This study argues that the influence of Islam on Christianity should be accounted for not only in terms of synchronic influence, but also in terms of influence on pre-Christian religious practice, some aspects of which have later been incorporated into the Christian practice. The paper provides evidence for the key role of the missionaries’ translation techniques in shaping the religious lexicon, and at the same time emphasizes the importance of local interethnic dynamics and language contact.
  • Khachaturyan, Maria (2019)
    This paper reviews inclusory constructions and pronouns in the Mande language family and proposes a diachronic account of their development. Inclusory constructions, which are found in several Mande languages, are a type of conjunction strategy where the whole set of participants - the superset - and a subset of participants are expressed, as in Dan-Gwetaa yaa Gbato 'Gbato and I', lit. 'we Gbato'. In a number of Southern and Southwestern Mande languages, inclusory constructions are typologically unique, as they feature a separate series of inclusory pronouns, which are used exclusively in this construction. The paper argues that these inclusory pronouns are a Southwestern Mande innovation, which spread to other Mande languages through contact.
  • Ainiala, Terhi; Östman, Jan-Ola Ingemar (John Benjamins, 2017)
    Pragmatics & Beyond New Series
  • Cruschina, Silvio (2021)
    This paper explores the effects of language contact in the nominal morphology of central Sicilian dialects. In particular, this study is concerned with the contact-induced changes related to the distribution of three plural formatives that give rise to competition between different inflectional classes with respect to a number of lexemes. It is shown that sociolinguistic factors such as speaker age account for the distribution of the competing plural forms and the high degree of variation. As a consequence, a slow and gradual change is leading to the disappearance of the plural form that has no equivalent in the contact language, that is, in Italian.
  • Moring, Tom; Markelin, Lia (de Gruyter, 2019)
    Handbücher zur Sprach- und Kommunikationswissenschaft / Handbooks of Linguistics and Communication Science (HSK)
    Grounded in media studies, this chapter discusses how different minority languages are served by the media in various contexts. It specifically addresses how the needs of minority language speakers are fulfilled by the media in different languages. A pertinent issue in this context is how users of minority languages consume media in various languages in the emerging digital media ecosystem. Our focus on minority languages can contribute to many aspects of research on language contact, such as issues of language conflict, ethodologies useful for studying language contact, language standardization, language shift, and language planning, policy, and politics. This focus is particularly interesting, as minority language speakers often have more varied language skills and needs (which they fulfill through their daily media habits) than the ‘average’ mainstream media consumer. Furthermore, minority languages tend to be more threatened than nurtured by the media, as a result of varied and asymmetric language contacts.
  • Helsingin yliopisto, Finskugriska och nordiska avdelningen; Helsingin yliopisto, Finskugriska och nordiska avdelningen; Björklöf, Sofia; Jantunen, Santra; (Suomalais-Ugrilainen Seura, 2019)
    Uralica Helsingiensia
    This volume gathers together articles dealing with Finnic minority languages and language contacts. The first part presents topics focusing on phonology, morphology, morphosyntax, syntax as well as lexical relations. The second part of the book consists of non-peer-reviewed reports on archived and digital Finnic minority language materials as well as two field trip reports to Finnic-speaking or formerly Finnic-speaking areas. This collection is based on the work carried out during the project “Language change in multilingual Finnic”, funded by the Kone Foundation. Most articles are based on presentations given at a symposium organized at the XII International Congress for Finno-Ugric Studies in Oulu in August 2015.
  • Björklöf, Sofia (Suomalais-Ugrilainen Seura, 2019)
    Uralica Helsingiensia
    The aim of this article is 1) to describe the historical language contact situation between the genetically closely related Finnic varieties of western Ingria, 2) to give examples of the numerous loanwords originating from mutual contacts among local Finnic varieties as well as areal diffusion, and 3) to discuss the method of investigating contacts and borrowing among closely related varieties. The data are taken from old dialectal materials published in vocabularies and dictionaries as well as preserved in archives. The words that are analysed and discussed etymologically in more detail are drawn from Vote, Ingrian, and Estonian. Although it is often difficult to confirm the direction of borrowing among closely related varieties, I seek to determine the direction of diffusion in the varieties whose development cannot be described merely in terms of a traditional binary family tree model. Examples of mutual borrowing between Vote, Ingrian, Estonian, and Finnish are presented. Estonian loanwords in Vote and Ingrian can usually be recognised by their distribution. Most vocabulary originating as loans (in Vote, Ingrian, and Estonian) has been borrowed from Finnish. Loans in both Vote and Estonian often have a distribution not only in Ingrian but also in Finnish. Because of the phonetic similarity of these varieties, the donor variety usually cannot be defined. Vote loanwords occur only sporadically in Ingrian and Estonian: they may also form a substratum. The speakers of Finnic varieties in western Ingria used to live in old rural communities with long-term plurilingualism, villages with a mixed population, and vague language boundaries. The arrival of new inhabitants from the countries, which ruled this area and the foundation of St. Petersburg in 1703 changed the ethnographic balance between different peoples in Ingria. This increased linguistic diversity and altered the hierarchy of the languages leading gradually to accelerating language and identity shift of the local peoples of Ingria. [Summary in Finnish and in Estonian][Tiivistelmä suomeksi ja viroksi]
  • Dahlgren, Sonja Karin (2018)
    This summary presents the main findings of my Ph.D. dissertation (University of Helsinki) on the phonological transfer of Egyptian on second language Greek usage in Egypt.
  • Grünthal, Riho (Finno-Ugrian Society, 2016)
    Uralica Helsingiensia
    In Erzya, transitivity is indexed both in the verb conjugation and the inflection of the object. The degree of definiteness and case of object alternate, while the verb displays the cross-reference of the person and number of both the subject and object. The morphologically complex transitivity marking system is a major challenge for speakers of Erzya as a second language. The article examines the variation of Erzya transitive clause in the light of data drawn from interviews with non-native Erzya speakers who have a Slavic or Turkic language as their first language. During the HALS fieldwork in Dubenskiy district at the Republic of Mordovia in August 2013, a survey test was made on 68 transitive clauses representing patterns of both high and low transitivity. The answers of the Erzya second language speakers showed that they had adopted Erzya transitivity as a system involving both nominal and verbal inflection. However, the marking of transitivity varied between individual speakers regardless of their background. Although the interviewed non-native Erzya speakers were very fluent, there was a clear contrast between the answers of native and non-native speakers.