- Kevin Rottet
- Course Description
The coexistence of two or more languages in neighboring communities, and even more so in the same community, can lead to a broad range of social and linguistic outcomes reflecting the intensity and duration of the contact situation. Relatively slight contact may lead to nothing more than modest lexical borrowing; higher levels of bilingualism may result in widespread discursive practices such as codeswitching. More intense contact may even occasion grammatical borrowing from one language into another. In the most extreme scenarios, intense language contact may lead to the creation of entirely new language varieties: koïnes, pidgins and creoles, and even the intertwined or bilingual mixed languages such as Michif, Ma’a, and Media Lengua. We will examine the scholarly literature on all of these topics and also observe sprachbunds, geographical areas characterized by prolonged contact and leading to particularly striking kinds of structural convergence.