Order in the creole speech community
Marking past temporal reference in Bequia (St Vincent and the Grenadines)
Creolists and variationists often conceptualize variation in multilectal speech communities as a continuum of linearly ordered linguistic features. Using the variationist comparative method, we analyze variation in past tense marking in a creole speech community (Bequia, St Vincent and the Grenadines), comparing across groups of speakers (communities and age-groups) in terms of frequencies of past-marking, language-internal constraints on past-marking and the ranking of factors within those constraints. Based on these multiple lines of evidence, the analysis shows that placing groups on a continuum is not straightforward, in line with local language ideologies. We argue that linear models of variation may reify relationships between varieties in terms of differences that are not sustained across different levels of analysis. We also show that the relationships between lects even in quite small communities are subject to change across generations.
Keywords: comparative variation, polylectal grammar, creole continuum, past tense, Bequia
Published online: 12 June 2019
Aboh, Enoch O.
Aceto, Michael and Jeffrey P. Williams
Baayen, R. Harald, Doug J. Davidson, and Douglas M. Bates
Blondeau, Helene and Naomi Nagy[ p. 84 ]
Buchstaller, Isabelle and Alexandra D’Arcy
Chambers, Jack K. and Peter Trudgill
Erker, D. and Gregory R. Guy
Fon Sing, Guillaume
González-Vilbazo, Kay and Luis López
Gumperz, John J.[ p. 85 ]
Guy, Gregory R.
Johnson, Daniel Ezra
Labov, William, Sharon Ash, and Charles Boberg
Levin, Beth and Malka Rappaport Hovav
McWhorter, John H.
[ p. 86 ]
Meyerhoff, Miriam and Steffen Klaere
2017 A case for clustering speakers and linguistic variables: Big issues with smaller samples in language variation. In Isabelle Buchstaller and Beat Siebenhaar, eds. Language Variation – European Perspectives VI: Selected Papers from the Eight International Conference on Language Variation in Europe (ICLaVE 8). Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 23–46.
Meyerhoff, Miriam and James N. Stanford
Meyerhoff, Miriam and James A. Walker
Michaelis, Susanne, Philippe Maurer, Martin Haspelmath, and Magnus Huber
Nagy, Naomi and Miriam Meyerhoff
Poplack, Shana and Sali A. Tagliamonte
Rickford, John R.
Rickford, John R. and Faye McNair-Knox
Roy, Joseph and Stephen Levey[ p. 87 ]
2014 Mixed effects models and unbalanced sociolinguistic data: The need for caution. Poster presented at NWAV43, Chicago.
Sankoff, David, Sali A. Tagliamonte, and Eric Smith
Santa Ana, Otto
Schleef, Erik and Meyerhoff, Miriam
Singler, John Victor
St Vincent and the Grenadines tourism statistics
2013 St Vincent and the Grenadines Tourism Authority Report. http://exploresvg.com/index.php/en/about-svg/tourism-statistics (accessed 15 February 2015).
Tagliamonte, Sali A.
Van Herk, Gerard and Shana Poplack
Walker, James A.
Walker, James A., Michael Dunn, Aymeric Daval-Markussen, and Miriam Meyerhoff
2015 Modelling the speech community through multiple variables: Trees, networks and clades. Poster presented at NWAV44, Toronto.
Walker, James A. and Miriam Meyerhoff
Walker, James A. and Jack Sidnell[ p. 88 ]
Williams, Jeffrey P.