Color terms in Colonia Tovar, an Alemannisch Enclave in Venezuela

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The Tovarese are located in a mountain valley some 40 kilometers west of Caracas. They are an ethnically distinct, endogamous group numbering some 3,000, mostly engaged in small-scale farming. Until about 1964 they were fairly well isolated from the rest of Venezuela, but since then – with the advent of a hard surfaced road – they are rapidly becoming integrated. Most speak Spanish; some older adults speak Modern Standard German (Schriftsdeutsch), and some of the middle-aged read it; and almost all speak the local form of Alemannisch. This is known both as dialekt and as baadiš, and, though many consider it as somehow inferior, they nonetheless regard it to be their own, proper ethnic-group-identifying language. It is the color terminology of this language that is under consideration.


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