Tag Archives: creoles

“Prime Ministaw:” Jamaican Rounded Schwa

Most Anglophone Caribbean nations have dialect continua, with an English Creole at one end and some variety of Standard English at the other. I find Jamaica’s continuum particularly fascinating for the ways in which “Jamaican English” (i.e. Standard English as spoken … Continue reading

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Will English Dialects Become Languages?

It’s a fair question to ask if English dialects may eventually split off into separate languages.  This has happened before, of course, Latin being perhaps the most notable example. And while I find it a compelling question, I think we’re … Continue reading

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Jamaican Patois (And English Schwa)

I’ve recently become fascinated with Jamaican Patois, the creole language spoken on the island of the same name.  The language derives from African languages and various dialects of the British Isles spoken in the 17th-Century.  So it offers insight into … Continue reading

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Singlish

As I’m strapped for time today, I’ll open up the floor to a question: does anybody know anything about Singlish? This term refers to a creole language in Singapore, a mix of English and various East Asian languages. The spectrum … Continue reading

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A Brief Look at Jamaican Creole

I’ll begin today’s post with a wonderful video of the The Night Before Christmas spoken in Jamaican Creole (a.k.a. Patois): For non-Jamaicans the clip above is probably so hard to understand that it seems like a different language.  Which is … Continue reading

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