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Academic Paper


Title: A Creole origin for Barlovento Spanish? A linguistic and sociohistorical inquiry
Author: Manuel Díaz-Campos
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Indiana University
Author: J. Clancy Clements
Institution: Indiana University
Linguistic Field: Historical Linguistics; Sociolinguistics
Abstract: McWhorter challenges the validity of the limited access model for creole formation, noting that “the mainland Spanish colonies put in question a model which is crucial to current creole genesis.” His thesis is that in the Spanish mainland colonies the disproportion between the Black and White populations was enough for the emergence of a creole language. This article focuses on one colony, Venezuela, and argues that Africans there had as much access to Spanish as they did in islands such as Cuba. Based on this fact, the relevant linguistic evidence is analyzed. The most important contribution of this study is the discussion of the Spanish crown's monopolization of the slave trade, which kept the Black/White ratio relatively low in certain Spanish colonies until the end of the 18th century. Until now, this part of the puzzle has been absent in the discussion of the missing Spanish creoles.

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This article appears IN Language in Society Vol. 37, Issue 3, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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