Edited by Cecelia Cutler, Zvjezdana Vrzić and Philipp Angermeyer
[Creole Language Library 53] 2017
► pp. 49–78
The African diaspora in Latin America
Linguistic contact and consequences
Some 60% of the Atlantic slave traffic was directed to Luso-Hispanic America, principally Brazil, Cuba, Hispaniola, Colombia, etc., where people of African ancestry still form substantial majorities in some areas. This paper examines the linguistic consequences of this massive contact between Africans and Europeans. In colonial times, non-native and pidgin/creole varieties clearly existed in Latin America (cf. Palenquero, Papiamentu, Cuban habla bozal). In contemporary Latin America, people of African ancestry tend to be the defining speakers of nonstandard varieties whose linguistic characteristics are best explained in terms of a history of contact and/or creolization. Overall, popular Latin American Spanish and Portuguese appear to have been significantly influenced by Afro-European language contact.