This edited volume brings together fourteen original contributions to the
on-going debate about what is possible in contact-induced language change.
The authors present a number of new vistas on language contact which
represent new developments in the field.
In the first part of the volume, the focus is on methodology and theory.
Thomas Stolz defines the study of Romancisation processes as a very
promising laboratory for language-contact oriented research and theoretical
work based thereon. The reader is informed about the large scale projects
on loanword typology in the contribution by Martin Haspelmath and on
contact-induced grammatical change conducted by Jeanette Sakel and Yaron
Matras. Christel Stolz reviews processes of gender-assignment to loan nouns
in German and German-based varieties. The typology of loan verbs is the
topic of the contribution by Søren Wichmann and Jan Wohlgemuth. In the
articles by Wolfgang Wildgen and Klaus Zimmermann, two radically new
approaches to the theory of language contact are put forward: a dynamic
model and a constructivism-based theory, respectively.
The second part of the volume is dedicated to more empirically oriented
studies which look into language-contact constellations with a Romance
donor language and a non-European recipient language. Spanish-Amerindian
(Guaraní, Otomí, Quichua) contacts are investigated in the comparative
study by Dik Bakker, Jorge Gómez-Rendón and Ewald Hekking. Peter Bakker and
Robert A. Papen discuss the influence exerted by French on the indigenous
languages of Canada. The extent of the Portuguese impact on the Amazonian
language Kulina is studied by Stefan Dienst. John Holm looks at the
validity of the hypothesis that bound morphology normally falls victim to
Creolization processes and draws his evidence mainly from Portuguese-based
Creoles. For Austronesia, borrowings and calques from French still are an
understudied phenomenon. Claire Moyse-Faurie’s contribution to this topic
is thus a pioneer’s work. Similarly, Françoise Rose and Odile
Renault-Lescure provide us with fresh data on language contact in French
Guiana. The final article of this collection by Mauro Tosco demonstrates
that the Italianization of languages of the former Italian colonies in East
Africa is only weak.
This volume provides the reader with new insights on all levels of
language-contact related studies. The volume addresses especially a
readership that has a strong interest in language contact in general and
its repercussions on the phonology, grammar and lexicon of the recipient
languages. Experts of Romance language contact, and specialists of
Amerindian languages, Afro-Asiatic languages, Austronesian languages and
Pidgins and Creoles will find the volume highly valuable.