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Reiteration in Pichi

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Abstract

Pichi, an Afro-Caribbean English-lexifier Creole spoken on the island of Bioko, Equatorial Guinea, features four types of reiteration. Amongst them, reduplication and repetition can be distinguished on formal and semantic grounds. Reduplication is a derivational operation consisting of self-compounding and tone deletion. It is restricted to dynamic verbs and yields iterative, dispersive and attenuative meanings. Repetition occurs with all major word classes, renders more iconic meanings and is analyzed as semi-morphological in nature. A comparison with verbal reiteration in a cross-section of West African languages and two of its sister languages in the Caribbean allows the conclusion that Pichi reduplication reflects an areal pattern. I conclude further that Pichi reduplication is not exceptionally iconic nor specifically “creole” in nature.

References

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