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Sprachinselwelten – The World of Language Islands

Entwicklung und Beschreibung der deutschen Sprachinseln am Anfang des 21. Jahrhunderts- The Developmental Stages and the Description of German Language Islands at the Beginning of the 21 st Century


Edited By Nina Berend and Elisabeth Knipf-Komlósi

Dieser Sammelband besteht zum Teil aus den Referaten der Sprachinselsektion der 1. Internationalen Tagung der IGDD, die im März 2003 in Marburg an der Lahn stattgefunden hat. Die anderen Beiträge wurden von Forschern aus verschiedenen Sprachinselregionen der Welt beigesteuert. Im Zentrum der Aufsätze stehen soziolinguistische, dialektologische und kontaktlinguistische Entwicklungen, die in deutschen Sprachinseln der Welt am Anfang des 21. Jahrhunderts stattfinden.
This collection of papers contains contributions to the language island section of the First International Conference of the International Society for German Dialectology (IGDD), which took place in Marburg an der Lahn, Germany in March 2003. In addition, further contributions are included on research done in language island regions of the world. The focus of the essays is the socio-linguistic, dialectological and contact-linguistic survey of the development of German language islands across the world as registered at the beginning of the 21 st century.


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Pennsylvania German in the 21st Century


Mark L. Louden (Madison, Wisconsin) Despite the overwhelming sociolinguistic dominance of English in the United States, there is a small number of minority languages that not only survive but even thrive across generations without the support of fresh immigration from abroad. One such American minority language is Pennsylvania German (popularly, Pennsylvania Dutch), which developed in eighteenth- century colonial Pennsylvania as a result of heavy immigration from German-speaking Europe, especially the Palatinate. In this article we consider the modern sociolinguistic situa- tion of Pennsylvania German. We begin by reviewing the external factors that have promoted maintenance of Pennsylvania German alongside English, especially among those speakers who are the only ones today to employ both languages actively, namely the Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonites. We also note how Pennsylvania German, despite the universal bilingualism of its speakers, has remained largely resistant to contact-induced change in the core areas of linguistic structure, phonology, morphology, and syntax." Introduction As the world’s most populous country of immigration, the United States of America has long been characterized by linguistic diversity. The most recent census, taken in 2000, estimates that around 380 different languages are cur- rently spoken by about 18% of the total U.S. population (Shin and Bruno 2003). This is likely a conservative estimate, since most immigrants value proficiency in English, the dominant language in the United States, and thus tend to under- report their knowledge or use of languages other than English. Yet the apparent robustness of linguistic diversity in the U.S....

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