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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.

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Query Details

Query Subject:   Names of Foreigner or Immigrant Varieties
Author:   Lars Anders Kulbrandstad
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Query:   In an ongoing research project I explore what varieties spoken by foreigners and immigrants are called in various languages. I am interested in different kinds of designations: names of learner language in general, of immigrant varieties in particular groups or in general, of mixed varieties in multiethnic milieus and of more permanent varieties in groups with a background in given firs languages. The purpose of the study is to develop a typology of such names and to analyse what ideas and attitudes might lay behind them. In Scandinavia GEBROKKEN ('brokenâEuro') is the traditional general label in Danish and Norwegian for more or less faulty attempts to speak a foreign language; in Swedish it's BRUTEN ('broken'). Then there are less common appellations like KAUDERVELSK (Kauder Welsh in origin probably used about the language spoken by Italian merchants in southern Germany) and LABBELENSK (possibly a corruption of lapplandsk 'Lapplandish'). Among the more recent names I have registred so far are KEBABNORSK (''Kebab Norwegian''), PAKKISNORSK (''Pakistani Norwegian''), JALLANORSK (''Yalla Norwegian'' - most likely from the Arabic injection yalla 'hurry up'), VOLLANORSK (''Wallah Norwegian" from Arabic wa-ll (I swear) by Allah), RINKEBYSVENSKA (''Rinkeby Swedish'' - Rinkeby is a suburb in Stockholm) and PERKERDANSK (''Perker Danish'' - probably formed from per(ser) 'Persian' and tyr(ker) 'Turk''). I would now like to broaden the scope and include names and epithets from other languages and would be grateful for any help with the data collection. Please include as much information about each item as possible (sense, emotive value, origin, distribution etc.). I will post a summary of our contributions. Lars Anders Kulbrandstad Hedmark University College Norway
LL Issue: 15.1822
Date posted: 16-Jun-2004


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