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Title: A Grammar of Upcountry Sri Lanka Malay
Written By: Sebastian Nordhoff
Series Title: LOT Dissertation Series

Sri Lanka Malay is a variety of Malay which has undergone heavy influence
from its adstrates Sinhala and Tamil since the first Malay immigrants arrived
in Ceylon in the 17th century. While the lexicon is overwhelmingly Malay, the
grammar has diverged considerably from its Austronesian origins and become
solidly South Asian. Where other Malay varieties are morphologically isolating
and have prepositions, postposed modifiers and verb-medial word order,
Sri Lanka Malay is agglutinative and has postpositions, preposed modifiers
and verb-final word order. These changes all happened within the last 350
years. Sri Lanka Malay is therefore a very important language for scholars of
language contact and (rapid) language change.

This grammar describes the sociohistorical circumstances in which this language
developed and gives a full overview of its phonology, morphology, syntax and
pragmatics, which makes it a useful resource for Austronesianists. Similarities
to the contact languages Sinhala and Tamil are highlighted to incorporate the
South Asianist’s perspective. Besides the traditional form-to-function
description (what does morpheme X do?), this description also covers the
converse perspective,i.e. function-to-form (How can function Y be expressed
in the language?). This makes this book also a valuable resource for
typologists, syntacticians and semanticists.

Publication Year: 2009
Publisher: Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke (LOT)
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BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics
Subject Language(s): Creole Malay, Sri Lankan
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Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9789460930119