Is Spanglish a new American language?


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This document is a Linguistics research about some generalities of Spanglish.

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Is Spanglish a new American language?

  1. 1. Is Spanglish a new American language? Diana L. Portillo Rodríguez August 2013
  2. 2. “We are not as Mexican people living in the rest of Mexican territory; however, we are not American.” Chicano people
  3. 3. Is Spanglish a pidgin, a creole or a language? • Pidgin is “a simple form of a language, especially English, Portuguese or Dutch, with a limited number of words that are used together with words from a local language. It is used when people who do not speak the same language need to talk to each other”. • Oxford Dictionary.
  4. 4. • Pidgin is an auxiliary language which arises to build certain limited communication needs among people who have no common language. The majority of pidgins around the world originated as trade languages. (Geoffrey Finch, 2000).
  5. 5. Creole • Creole is “a language formed when a mixture of a European language with a local language (especially an African language spoken by slaves in the West Indies) is spoken as a first language”. • Oxford Dictionary.
  6. 6. • A pidgin is a creole which has become the mother tongue of a community. For this to happen it needs to acquire native speakers. (Geoffrey Finch, 2000).
  7. 7. “The language is a formal system with different elements such as the linguistic sign, which consists of two elements: the signifier and the signified”. Ferdinand de Saussure
  8. 8. The sign (Saussure:1916,1982) is constructed by society and it reflexes it in different daily life activities such as religion rites, meal preparations, and literature and leisure activities, for example.
  9. 9. Spanglish speakers • Hispano-phones who are not part of the United States show different cultural characteristics which are different from those who speak Spanish or English. • Their language use, traditions, and customs acquisition are the result of the two cultures lifestyles.
  10. 10. They practice in the same way American and Mexican traditions; for instance, they celebrate Thanksgiving Day eating tamales as well as roasted turkey.
  11. 11. In language use … • It is very common to hear expressions such as: “la librería de la city”, “la vacuum cleaner”, “la washatería”, “la marketa”, “el toilet”, or “el parqueadero”.
  12. 12. “Language is not only a means of communication but also a brand of identity and membership to certain groups” Ilan Stavans
  13. 13. • The sense of belonging to a social group has a special importance for its members. • This can be one of the causes that originated this mixture of two languages.
  14. 14. Eugene Coseriu • He considered there was an intermediate stage between language and speech: the social standard which is implied in the daily use of the language in a special group. • The speakers take what they need to communicate from their environment.
  15. 15. • Spanglish speakers use both codes, English and Spanish languages, to communicate their thoughts. • For example: Pagué la aseguranza de mi carro.
  16. 16. “Language is strongly attached to culture; it is not biologically determined, it is a function acquired by culture” Edward Sapir
  17. 17. Linguistic variations • There are three variations: 1. Variation associated with geographical area. 2. Variation associated with age and economical level. 3. Variation associated with context.
  18. 18. Variation associated with geographical area • It is constituted by the linguistic use in a determined geographical area. • Spanglish is spoken in certain areas in the USA; those areas where there is a considerable amount of Hispanics, such as California, Texas, and Florida among other states.
  19. 19. Variation associated with age and economical level • It is defined by social characteristics such as the age and economical level. • Spanglish speakers generally are laborers who work in fields of plantations or in factories. • Migrants children.
  20. 20. Variation associated with context • This variation is determined by context; specifically it is the linguistic use given by the speakers in communication concrete situations. • Spanglish speakers use this language while they are with their families or group of Hispanic friends.
  21. 21. Linguistic phenomena • • • • Diglossia. Calque or loan translation. Loan words. Code-switching.
  22. 22. Diglossia • A community speaks two languages, one for domestic use and the other for official use. • For instance: young people speak English when they are at school; however, when they are with family or friends, they talk Spanglish.
  23. 23. Calque or loan translation • A word or phrase is borrowed from another language word by word or root for root translation. • For instance: perro caliente.
  24. 24. Loan Words • They are words borrowed from a donor language and incorporated into a recipient language. • These words are adapted to Spanish phonology. E.g.: parqueadero.
  25. 25. Code-switching • People begin a sentence in one language and at a certain point they will begin speaking in another language.
  26. 26. Acculturation • People who migrate to the United States do not want to be different and they speak similarly to what they hear. E.g.: “cora” instead of “quarter” (25 cents coin).
  27. 27. Spanglish has literature. “Don Quijote de la Mancha” was translated into Spanglish.
  28. 28. Ilan Stavans • Language and culture professor in Amherst University in Massachusetts. He wrote the introduction for this book. • He also published in 2003 “Spanglish, The Making of a New American Language” in which he considers Spanglish as a linguistic system which is the result of its speakers needs”.
  29. 29. Cyberspace: speakers need more vocabulary
  30. 30. My hypothesis • Spanglish is a language since it is a mixture of English and Spanish due to the different featuring involved in this language.
  31. 31. Conclusions • Spanglish is an agreement made by people who have in common not only native language, but also traditions and lifestyle they brought from different origin places and they have mixed with North American culture.
  32. 32. • Spanglish has speakers who belong to a different social group, not to mention only the linguistic aspect but also the cultural aspect. • They belong to a new culture since they have a new language which has modified not only their thought but also their lifestyle. • There are Spanglish native speakers.
  33. 33. Sources • • • • • • Diccionario de Spanglish : Retrieved on March 4th, 2013. Finch, Geoffrey (2000). Linguistic terms and concepts. Great Britain: Palgrave. Hispanic PR Wire: The Fashion Rocks Awards Speak Spanglish: Retrieved on March 31st, 2013. La Toupie Dictionnaire : Retrieved on March 31st, 2013. Le Dictionnaire : Retrieved on March 4th, 2013. Living and writing in Spanglish by Anne Schulock : spanglish Retrieved on March 31st, 2013.
  34. 34. • Mamitalks blog : Retrieved on March 31st, 2013. • Oxford Advanced Learners Dictionary: Retrieved on August 18th, 2013. • Quarterly Americas: South by Southwest Revolucionado: Retrieved on March 31st, 2013. • Saussare, Ferdinand de (1916, 1982): Curso de Lingüística General. México: Ediciones Nuevo Mar, S.A de C.V. • Wikipedia Spanglish : Retrieved on March 4th, 2013. • Wikispaces : Spanglish : Retrieved on March 31st, 2013.
  35. 35.