The Syntax of Jamaican Creole
A cartographic perspective
This book offers an in-depth study of the overall syntax of (basilectal) Jamaican Creole, the first since Bailey (1966). The author, a Jamaican linguist, meticulously examines distributional and interpretative properties of functional morphology in Jamaican Creole (JC) from a cartographic perspective (Cinque 1999, 2002; Rizzi 1997, 2004), thus exploring to what extent the grammar of JC provides morphological manifestations of an articulate IP, CP and DP. The data considered in this work offers new evidence in favour of these enriched structural analyses, and the instances where surface orders differ from the underlying functional skeleton are accounted for in terms of movement operations. This investigation of Jamaican syntax therefore allows us to conclude that the 'poor' inflectional morphology typical of Creole languages in general and of (basilectal) Jamaican Creole in particular does not correlate with poor structural architecture. Indeed the free morphemes discussed, as well as the word order considerations that indicate syntactic movement to designated projections, serve as arguments in favour of a rich underlying functional map.