Pidgins and Creoles: Volume 1, Theory and Structure

This first volume of Holm’s major survey of pidgins and creoles provides a readable introduction to a field of study that has become established only in the past few decades. Written for both students and general readers with a basic knowledge of linguistics, the book’s original perspective will also attract specialists in the field seeking a broad overview of the linguistic and sociolinguistic relationships between these languages. Restructured versions of English, French, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, and other languages arose during European colonial expansion, resulting in such creoles as Jamaican, Haitian, Papiamentu, and some one hundred others, as well as such semi-creoles as Afrikaans, non-standard Brazilian Portuguese, and American Black English. Scholars have tended to work on particular language varieties in relative isolation rather than undertaking comparative research into the genesis, development, and structure of creoles. In this book, however, Holm draws on studies of a broad range of languages to make clear the extent of creoles’ differences and similarities. The core of this volume is a comparative study of creoles based on European languages in Africa and the Caribbean in terms of their lexical semantics, phonology, and syntax. Volume 2 presents an overview of the socio-historical development of each of some one hundred pidgins, creoles and semi-creoles, providing texts and highlighting the salient linguistic features of each.


Preface; List of abbreviations; 1. Introduction; 2. Theory: a historical overview; 3. Lexicosemantics; 4. Phonology; 5. Syntax; Conclusion; References; Index; Contents of Volume II.

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