Article published in:Perspectives on Phonological Theory and Development: In honor of Daniel A. Dinnsen
Edited by Ashley W. Farris-Trimble and Jessica A. Barlow
[Language Acquisition and Language Disorders 56] 2014
► pp. 155–172
German settlement varieties in Kansas
Some unusual phonological and morphological developments with the approach of language death
After discussing the unique opportunity for linguistic investigation afforded by so-called “speech-islands,” speech communities embedded in a linguistic/cultural context far removed from the parent linguistic/cultural situation, we examine the appropriateness of the theoretical concept “speech-island,” determining that a vaguer concept of “speech settlement” allows for a more accurate depiction of the linguistic interaction with the surrounding dominant culture. After a sketch of German settlements in Kansas, we conclude that the current status of these settlements is rapidly approaching language death. In this context, a number of unusual developments in the phonology (e.g., velarization of [f]), morphology (emergence of a prepositional case) and lexicon (semantic transfer of English ‘to like’) in Kansas German varieties present linguists with explanatory challenges.
Published online: 29 April 2014
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Cited by 2 other publications
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