The indigenization of English in North America

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indigenization is interpreted below as the adaptation of a language to the communicative habits and needs of its speakers in a novel ecology. Thus North American Englishes are as indigenized as those of Asia and Africa. The equation for indigenization is the same, although the outcomes vary according to geographical ecology, the nature of ethnolinguistic contacts, population structure, modes of language “transmission,” and the timing of particular changes. These factors and others account for variation not only from one colony to another but also within each colony. Traditional distinctions such as “native” vs. “indigenized” Englishes and “creole” vs. “non-creole” varieties are simply socio-ideological and can be dispensed with in studies of language evolution.


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