The stratification of English-language lone-word and multi-word material in Puerto Rican Spanish-language press outlets

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This chapter considers the presence of English in a 3.3-million-word corpus of Puerto Rican news press addressed to distinct social classes: El Vocero, published for a working-class population, El Nuevo Día for a mainstream market, and 80grados for an intellectual readership. Statistical models reveal no significant differences between sub-corpora with respect to the frequency of English unigram and bigram tokens. However, significant differences are returned for English 3+grams sequences: 80grados presents longer, more diverse and complex English spans than do El Nuevo Día and El Vocero. Interpreting the results in view of the social context, we suggest that, in Puerto Rico, the use simplex and compound anglicisms might not signal prestige; it could be code-switching that is linked with status.


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