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Title: Atlas of the languages of Suriname
Edited By: Eithne B Carlin

To the outside world, Suriname is known as a rather extraordinary country in South America in that it is a Dutch-speaking state on an otherwise almost totally Hispanic-speaking continent. Those who look closer, however, soon discover that Suriname's uniqueness lies somewhat less in its apparently misplaced "Dutchness" and more in the fact that Suriname is home to almost twenty different languages, no mean feat considering that the population numbers less than half a million inhabitants. Hardly any inhabitant of
Suriname is monolingual, yet not everyone is multilingual in the same languages, nor to the same extent.

The aim of this book is twofold: first to introduce the reader to the linguistic complexity that abounds in Suriname, and second to afford him/her insight into the genesis, evolution, and salient linguistic features of the languages and language-families that are represented there. The languages of Suriname can be divided into three groups, namely the Amerindian, the creole, and the Eurasian languages. The Amerindian group comprises eight languages belonging to two different language families, the Arawakan and the
Cariban. The creole languages, which are closely related, include
Sranantongo, the lingua franca of Suriname, and the Maroon languages spoken in the interior of the country, namely Ndyuka, Saramaccan, and various dialects thereof. Finally, the third group comprises what we call the
Eurasian languages that include the former colonial language Dutch, and those languages that were imported to Suriname along with a sizeable portion of the population who came as indentured labourers from Asia, namely
Sarnami Hindi, Chinese, and Javanese.

The book includes a range of language maps that trace the languages of
Suriname through the last five centuries. The illustrations throughout the book have been hand-picked to enliven each chapter, allowing the reader to feel the vibrancy of the past and the present language situation.


List of contributors
List of abbreviations
List of maps
List of illustrations
Prologue : Vernacular languages and cultural dialogue (Andre Kramp)

Part I: The Amerindian peoples and languages
1 The native population: Migrations and identities (Eithne B. Carlin and Karin Boven)
2 Patterns of language, patterns of thought: The Cariban languages (Eithne B. Carlin)
3 The Arawak language (Marie-France Patte)

Part II: The creole languages
4 The history of the Surinamese creoles I: A sociohistorical survey (Jacques Arends)
5 The history of the Surinamese creoles II: Origin and differentiation (Norval Smith)
6 The structure of the Surinamese creoles (Adrienne Bruyn)
7 Young languages, old texts: Early documents in the Surinamese creoles (Jacques Arends)
Part III: The Eurasian languages
8 Surinamese Dutch (Christa de Kleine)
9 Kejia: A Chinese language in Suriname (Paul Tjon Sie Fat)
10 Sarnami as an immigrant koine (Theo Damsteegt)
11 Javanese speech styles in Suriname (Clare Wolfowitz)

Glossary of linguistic terms
List of contributors

Publication Year: 2002
Publisher: KITLV Press
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Language Family(ies): Indo-European
Amerindian Pidgin
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Format: Hardback
ISBN: 906718196X
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: xii + 345 pp.
Prices: 37,50 Euros