As mentioned in the last issue, Jeff Allen has completed two graduate theses on St. Lucian and Dominican creoles. Here are summaries by the author:

“Sainte-Lucie: Description sociolinguistique d’une île antillaise”. (Maîtrise Thesis. Département des Sciences du Langage, Université Lyon, 1992).

“This thesis is a sociolinguistic study of St Lucian French Creole, a language spoken on the island of St Lucia in the West Indies. Chapter one, taking a historical perspective, treats issues such as language varieties, pidginization, and creolization. Also included is a brief case study comparison of St Lucia and Martinique. Chapter two takes on a more contemporary point of view with various discussions on economy (internal resources, external aid, tourism), cultural points (theater, radio, medicine, church/religion, Internation-al Creole Day), language varieties in modern St Lucia, the process of relexification, psycholinguistic and sociolinguistic factors, language attitudes and an overview of Former Lexifier Language Acquisition (FLLA). Allen has coined the term FLLA for the specific context of St Lucia where French, once the official language of the island and the lexifier language of St Lucian Creole, was replaced by a competing international language (English) in the 19th century. When the contemporary St Lucian seeks to learn French, certain factors facilitate or impede the learning process. FLLA may also apply to other Creole contexts that show evidence of a change in the official status of the lexifier language in the past. Chapter three looks to the future with discussion on the political climate, standardization of the orthography, literacy programs for children and adults, and post-literacy issues.”

“Sainte-Lucie: relexification, décreolisation, recreolisation ou adlexification?” (Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies Thesis, Département des Sciences du Langage & Centre de Recherches Linguistiques et Sémiologiques, Université Lyon, 1993)

“This thesis is a phonological study of loanwords that originate from different varieties of standard and local English and that have now entered into the St Lucian and Dominican French Creoles. This study reconsiders the concept of word-borrowing by first defining the situation of St Lucia and Dominica within various contemporary theories of lexification and then by analyzing data according to pertinent issues in socio-linguistics and psycholinguistics. Textual data is collected from newspapers and folkloric stories written in the two French Creole varieties; interviews are conducted with St Lucians living in the UK based on the data collected in the texts.

“Chapter one presents the socio-historical development of St Lucian Creole from the arrival of the Europeans in the 17th century up through case studies of modern century tutoring and literacy programs. Chapter two contains complete phonetic and phonemic inventories for the varieties of English and the French Creole that coexist both in St Lucia and in Dominica. Chapter three provides a 30-page comprehensive diachronic survey of the theories of creolization, decreolization, re-creolization, relexification, and adlexification. Chapter four examines the degree of lexical influence that occurs through the contact of two languages, including topics such as language choice, code-switching, word-borrowing, and bilingualism. Chapter five contains analyses of over 200 utterances/ sentences with loanwords from English varieties that are found in the writing and speech of St Lucian and Dominican French Creole speakers. Chapter six discusses the data by categorizing the examples of the corpus into semantic domains. Chapter seven, contrary to past literature on St Lucian French Creole, concludes by stating that these French Creoles today are not undergoing relexification, a process normally attributed to the pidginization stage of language develop-ment. This study rather argues that adlexifi-cation (lexical borrowing from coexisting adstrate languages) is currently affecting these French Creoles via English varieties, thus producing some totally assimilated loan-words, some non-assimilated loanwords, and some partially assimilated loanblends in St Lucian and Dominican French Creoles.”

Jeff’s latest address is:

Jeff Allen, c/o Dupont
6, mail Victor Jarra
93160, Noisy-le-Grand


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