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Title:Exploring the emergence of an incipient English Pidgin in Kuwait: A continuum of bilingual behaviour
Author(s):Almuhanna, Maryam
Advisor(s):Bhatt, Rakesh; Sadler, Randall
Department / Program:Linguistics
Discipline:Teaching of English Sec Lang
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):pidgins, language contact, code-switching, language hybridity
Abstract:This paper addresses the situation of increasing linguistic hybridity in the Arab Gulf state of Kuwait. With an Arabic-speaking country hosting to an influx of migrant workers since the 1960’s, a foundation for language contact was created. Despite the literature presenting pidginization as an extreme form of language restructuring, it has become increasingly widespread around the world (Rickford & McWhorter, 1997). The occurrence of an incipient trade pidgin variety is investigated, focusing on Kuwaiti-Migrant interactions in the context of a continuum of English-Arabic bilingual behavior. In order to explore such issues, the following research questions were used to guide the research: What kind of code-switching behavior manifests among migrants in Kuwait?; second, what are the principles motivating such code-switching behavior; and, third, what deductions can be made about the code-switching behavior motivated by intelligibility? Bhatt & Bolonyai’s (2011) framework of code-switching principles was adopted in analyzing the data in response to the first and second research question. Once the intelligibility-driven speech data was detected, it was analyzed within the frame of the third research question, and the hypothesis of it being indicative of a manifesting pidgin. With reference to the language contact literature, patterns of structural features illustrative of pidginization were identified, also with suggestion of a pidgin lexified by English as opposed to the previously investigated Arabic lexified Gulf Pidgin Arabic (Smart, 1990). The structural features mainly consist of omission of copulas and reduplication of different effects, as well as indications of the frequent use of Arabic function words, discourse particles more specifically, not only for pragmatic purposes, but also the pidgin users’ attempt to add structure to the utterances at hand. This study’s investigation of a Kuwait English pidgin consists of illustrations that can be drawn upon and used as a foundation for subsequent research on bilingual behavior in the such a context, given it is a highly underreported issue in the field of language contact.
Issue Date:2018-07-02
Rights Information:Copyright 2018 Maryam Almuhanna
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-09-27
Date Deposited:2018-08

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