On so-called "Spanglish"

7:30 pm on Thursday, April 18, 2013
9:00 pm on Thursday, April 18, 2013
Contact Name:
Carol Neidle
‘Spanglish’, the word often used to describe the casual oral registers of the speech of Hispanics in the US, is an unfortunate and misleading term. We demonstrate here that features that characterize popular varieties of Spanish in the US are, for the most part, parallel to those of popular forms of the language in Latin America and Spain. Further, we show that Spanish in the US is not of a hybrid character, i.e., not centrally characterized by structural mixing with English. We reject the term because (1) there is no objective justification for it, and (2) it expresses an ideology of exceptionalism and scorn that actually deprives the North American Latino community of a major resource in this globalized world: mastery of a world language. Lecture sponsored by the BU Linguistics Association.