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Looking beyond decreolization as an explanatory model of language change in Creole-speaking communities.

Aceto, Michael. 1999. Looking beyond decreolization as an explanatory model of language change in Creole-speaking communities. Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages 14: 93-119.

Abstract: This paper discusses internally-motivated change as a largely ignored factor in understanding diachrony in creole languages: that is, externally-motivated models — and the most popular of these is certainly decreolization and the related concept of the creole continuum — have been nearly exclusively relied upon by creolists to explain phenomena associated with language variation and change in creole-speaking communities, particularly among the Atlantic English-derived creoles. This paper presents one alternative to viewing variation data derived from creole speakers as solely a function of decreolization. It raises issues associated with (and explores alternatives to) that singular view of diachrony.

Profile Picture of Dr. Michael Aceto

Early Saramaccan Syllable Structure: An Analysis of Complex Onsets from Schumann’s 1778 Manuscript

Aceto, Michael. 1996. Early Saramaccan syllable structure: An analysis of complex onsets from Schumann’s 1778 manuscript. Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages 11: 23- 44.

Abstract: This paper presents a diachronic analysis of Saramaccan syllable structure. It examines data from Schumann’s 1778 manuscript, and demonstrates that early Saramaccan syllable structure included complex onsets. A case is also made that in the last two centuries, these complex onsets in Saramaccan have been simplified from CCV to CVCV. This example of language change has important implications for creole studies because most views of change (for two exceptions, see Muhlhäusler, 1986; Mufwene, 1993), especially those that rely on models of decreolization, often suggest that CV templates precede a change to complex onsets. A change from CCV to CVCV, though representing a common and less marked shift in terms of general syllable typology, appears to be considerably less documented among the Atlantic creole languages.

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Goldsmith As Journalist

Richard TaylorGoldsmith As Journalist. Madison, New Jersey: Fairleigh Dickinson UP; London and Toronto: Associated UP, 1993.

This book invites a reconsideration of the early career of Oliver Goldsmith, who not only exemplifies but consistently comments on the state of the press in High Georgian England. Goldsmith’s journalistic voice is incredibly diverse and frequently self contradictory supplying us with a narrative of social protest and professional accommodation.

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