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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: Accountability in Morphological Borrowing: Analyzing a linguistic subsystem as a sociolinguistic variable
Author: Tara Sanchez
Email: click here TO access email
Linguistic Field: Linguistic Theories; Morphology; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Papiamento
Abstract: Principles of structural borrowing have been proposed, relating to structures of the languages involved and sociodemographic circumstances of their respective societies. This article quantitatively evaluates the roles of both linguistic and social factors in structural borrowing via examination of language contact data from Aruba and Curaçao, where creole Papiamentu is in contact with Spanish, Dutch, and English. Variationist methods, rooted in Labov's Principle of Accountability, are applied in a novel way to the system of verbal morphology to flesh out factors promoting borrowing. Linguistic factors are found to be quantitatively stronger, and only one nonlinguistic factor was found to promote borrowing. Results are discussed in light of prevailing theories of language contact. Findings contribute to our understanding of the long-term consequences of language contact and the relationship of contact-induced change to a more general sociolinguistic theory of language variation and change.


This article appears IN Language Variation and Change Vol. 20, Issue 2.

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