Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

Words Onscreen

By Naomi S. Baron

Words Onscreen "explores how technology is reshaping our understanding of what it means to read."


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

Communication Accommodation Theory

Edited by Howard Giles

Most people modify their ways of speaking, writing, texting, and e-mailing, and so on, according to the people with whom they are communicating. This fascinating book asks why we 'accommodate' to others in this way, and explores the various social consequences arising from it.


Academic Paper


Title: Corpus evidence of anti-deletion in Black South African English noun phrases
Author: Yolande Botha
Linguistic Field: Text/Corpus Linguistics
Abstract: Black South African English (BSAfE) is now generally regarded as an independent variety of English rather than an interlanguage on the way to Standard English (Van Rooy, 2008: 274, 300 and in this issue). Mesthrie (2006: 115) demonstrates that many of the characteristic features of BSAfE can be ascribed to the overarching tendency of anti-deletion. Anti-deletion is a term coined by Mesthrie (2006: 115) to encompass three kinds of linguistic phenomena that are the opposite of deletion in generative analyses of English, namely undeletion, non-deletion and insertion. Undeletion ‘restores an element that is often assumed to be deleted or to have an empty node in generative analyses of English’ (Mesthrie, 2006: 125), e.g. She made me go (Mesthrie, 2006: 111) in which the infinitive marker to is undeleted. Insertion entails the addition of grammatical morphemes, e.g. can be able (Mesthrie, 2006: 139–40). After examination of a number of undeletion phenomena in interviews with 12 mesolectal speakers of BSAfE, Mesthrie (2006: 129) arrives at the following principle: ‘If a grammatical feature can be deleted in [Standard English], it can be undeleted in [Black South African English] mesolect.’ He points out that such undeletions are not mandatory and adds the following corollary to the principle of undeletion: ‘If a grammatical feature can be deleted in StE, it can also be (variably) deleted in [Black South African English] mesolect, at a lower rate of frequency’ (Mesthrie, 2006: 129).

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN English Today Vol. 29, Issue 1.

Return to TOC.

Add a new paper
Return to Academic Papers main page
Return to Directory of Linguists main page