HomeQ&AIs spanglish a pidgin, a creolized language or a language?

Is spanglish a pidgin, a creolized language or a language?

1
vote

I will probably catch quite a bit of flak for this question, but I'm going to ask it anyway.

I read an article that I found interesting on Spanglish and what type of linguistic niche it fills.

Here is a link to the article Latin Lingo-Boston Globe.

Reading the article made me wonder about the stages of development that Spanglish might be undergoing in different parts of the world. Spanglish is not a unified language (and possibly not a complete language at all); instead, because of varied origins, there are many different regional differences in its use.

My question is this: After having read this article, do you think that the Spanglish in your area is better categorized as a pidgin, a creolized language or a fully developed language?

Here are some basic dictionary definitions of a pidgin and a creolized language as a reminder of what they entail:

Pidgin A mixed language, or jargon originally developed for purposes of trade, incorporating the vocabulary of one or more languages with a very simplified form of the grammatical system of one of these. (an examples of this would be Chinese pidgin which is based on the syntax of Mandarin but incorporates English words)

Creolized language The form of language that develops when speakers of mutually unintelligible languages remain in persistent and long-lasting contact with one another, with one of the contributing languages typically dominant. (An example of this would be Cajun a language spoken by descendents of Acadian French exiles who settled in south Louisiana in the eighteenth century who intermarried over many generations with Spanish, German, and French Creole settlers).

Where I live (southeast Texas), I think that this form of communication is approaching or has possibly even reached the level of a fully creolized language. What about in your area--how far has Spanglish progressed as a form of communication?

20713 views
updated AGO 28, 2009
edited by Toph
posted by Izanoni1
While it, of course, pertains to vocabulary & grammar, I have moved this to General Discussions. - Toph, AGO 28, 2009

19 Answers

1
vote

you think too much but i try to answer your question. they tell me in school that language is about communication. so if say to donde esta el bathroom, then u communicate to me and i understand and then i say over alla. maybe that too much crazy to say it that way, but the idea went communicated so commication was accomplished. if he say to me hey there do u sabe where esta the bano? i don't think to where u come from or what type of creolized or pidgin is it. i just answer that el bathroom is esta over there alla. maybe i not answer right my english is not good...sorry.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
Thank you for your thoughts, and while your English was not grammatically correct, I understood your message. Thanks - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
The reason that I asked that question is because I am interested in the development and history of languages - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

i want to tell you that there are people at where i work that talk a "dead" tongue. they come from where New Orleans is. I hear them talk and to me it is like french and spanish. i say to him, what is that? he say to me that it is creole. i ask to him, it sounds like spanish but i cannot understand it he laugh to me...he say to me that it is creole...it is a mix of spanish and of the french. I say to him...no one talk like that where did you learn that? to me he says, it is a dead language....it was from his family and they live in the river of near new orleans. they all talk like that it was give from the older generations. it make me interested. so i ask him how many more talk that way? he say so me that it is dead. that he not talk it even to his own children...only the older ones speak it now. is that how latin died? que es que cree tu? es eso como se murio latin?

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
Aguacatona, this is the last post I will permit with this spelling. Please read your PM - 00494d19, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

que es que cree tu? es eso como se murio latín?

Creo que se murio Latin porque los Visigodos conquistó y destruyó mucha de Roma, y adelante Attila y los hunos tomaron las tierras de Roma. Finalmente, el tribu germánico conquisté toda de Roma y Roma gobernó por los germánicos.

Desde entonces, el estilo de vida romano se había perdido. Porque se murió la cultura, se murió la idioma. Pero, el latín tuvo los hijos de otras idiomas: el rumano, el italiano, el francés, el español, el castallano, y más. ¿Quién sabe? Quizas el Spanglish va a ser el hijo del español y el inglés.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by Izanoni1
0
votes

lazanon1...we do not have life enough to know if this is true...it is a how do you say? it is a guess. we can only look back. we have lives that come very short, there are not amoung us to see the development of talking or how it lives or comes to die. the language latin is not really dead at all, it has turned to france, rome and madrid, and still is used in church. it has come to change the form it has but has not died...like a tree...it not die...it change. the raices of the thing siga. they have words that are like u say to it only spanglish. if maybe we live in texas for 200 year (we know we cannot do that) we maybe see spanglish become Spanglish. I am sorry to you i do not have the words to explain in a good way what i say, and i feer my "spanglish" might be a bit lost on the topic.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
For not "having the words to say it," you said it very well. Thank you. - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

Can you imagine me trying to communicate with spanglish in Oaxaca? I'd look like a complete idiot!

What you have said here brings up an interesting point. Your goal to learn Spanish seems (and please feel free to correct me if I have mistaken your motivations) to stem heavily from a longing for adventure, intellectual enrichment, or a desire to experience other cultures. For many people that engage in Spanglish, however, I think that using this form of communication is a result of necessity more than desire. A person who has immigrated to southeast Texas from Guatemala or El Salvador may feel foolish trying to communicate with Spanglish in Houston, TX, but that person is likely to subjugate these feelings out of the a need to eat, feed a family, find shelter, etc..

For these reasons, it would seem that Spanglish (or many Spanglishes) could persist indefinitely and eventually become dissimilar enough from either Spanish or English to become its own language(s). I don't see this happening in the near future, as the genesis of different languages generally does not tend to occur in short time spans, but the proposition is an interesting one no less. If you actually listen to people speak Spanglish you might find that there are words that are used that are not English and are not Spanish but distinctly Spanglish. Of course, it remains to be seen whether these words represent a transient or transitional phase of the language's development (or whether the language will develop at all).

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by Izanoni1
I completely understand your point. It was not my intention to insult anyone who speaks spanglish out of necessity. :-) Peace - --Mariana--, AGO 28, 2009
No offense was taken; I respect and thank you for your opinion - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

HI agua:

i sorry teacher i not from school and i not studying. i just a girl who work with people who speak different languages. i could not do that what u do. i learn english and then i learn spanish because it is a part of

I appreciate the difficulty you encounter in learning English and Spanish, most likely. But all of us must at least TRY to write correctly. I think it takes about the same time to type i and I, but people simply don't bother. I see this is posts by natives every day. You are a learner, I strongly advise you to at least try....it will pay out in the end.

There was a thread the other day to delete posts with incorrect spelling. I have read the thread carefully. The rules of this forum clearly state that correct spelling is mandatory. I will pay heed to this idea from now on if the post/thread is written by a native. Chat talk is not allowed either. Words like "u", agua, do not exist.

Agua, I understand your grammar mistakes, but not your lack correct spelling.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

He still want to make to fight! come with me to finish the tower! my mother say to me many times, do not worry about the devil...god is the one you need to feer. she was right! He make confusion with the small ones so they not to know what is important! come with me now so we make to finish our tower...let him to make his words of anger at the other...we have lunch with god when we finish!

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
0
votes

i know i read again because i think i not to understand what you say. i think the spanish english is a Pidgin because it is made for the reason of trade. I guess we talk Pidgin because if he talk to me in rusia or in american or spansh he talk to me for the reason of trade. but it go away from that because if i see anna or mikel at store or at bar he talk to me the way we have talked. so it not stay in trade...it make the move to everyday life. but the girl Marianne and the teacher dont have within them the expierence to know the difference entre what is a book and what is real life. i say thank you to you for making understanding of my point of view. He teach and study at school but he not talk to anyone in spanish. She want to go to Espana but she not know what it mean to run out of words. maybe with time they learn. Please forgive me for going to long, but they like the people of Bable. they want to build the tower to god, but when he strike at them, they not smart enough to make a mezcla of words to continue in what is important, the building of the tower. they go to fight and forget about the tower. that is how is mariane and nathan. maybe you and i finish the tower while they make fights.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
We are talking about the definition of the word, not the validity of the form of communication in its ability to transmit meaning. - Nathaniel, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

As language is a vehicle of communication... communication itself can ONLY be achieved if poth parties can understand what is being said. Since Spanglish is not a formal language with no rules and require some mastery in BOTH English and Spanish, it is basically unintelligible jargon for those who do not have an understanding of both languages. As such, my vote goes for pidgin.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by Nathaniel
Thank you for your take on this - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

It's an interesting article, and an interesting topic. I'm afraid I can't even begin to answer your question, but the topic reminds me of a couple old articles I remember liking:

English will turn into Panglish in 100 years

By 2020 there may be two billion people speaking English, of whom only 300 million will be native speakers. Dr Suzette Haden Elgin, a retired linguist formerly at San Diego University in California, said: "I don't see any way we can know whether the result of what's going on now will be Panglish - a single English that would have dialects... or scores of wildly varying Englishes, many or most of them heading toward mutual unintelligibility."...

How English Is Evolving Into a Language We May Not Even Understand

Thanks to globalization, the Allied victories in World War II, and American leadership in science and technology, English has become so successful across the world that it's escaping the boundaries of what we think it should be. In part, this is because there are fewer of us: By 2020, native speakers will make up only 15 percent of the estimated 2 billion people who will be using or learning the language. Already, most conversations in English are between nonnative speakers who use it as a lingua franca...

updated AGO 28, 2009
edited by Toph
posted by Toph
Thank you for the links - Izanoni1, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

The question is in what the definition of Spanglish is or should be. It is not a question as to whether or not people are able to communicate or understand each other when it is spoken.

language??/?læ?gw?d?/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [lang-gwij] Show IPA

–noun 1. a body of words and the systems for their use common to a people who are of the same community or nation, the same geographical area, or the same cultural tradition: the two languages of Belgium; a Bantu language; the French language; the Yiddish language.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/language

A set of commonly accepted signs (indices, icons or symbols) is only one feature of language; all languages must define (i) the structural relationships between these signs in a system of grammar, (ii) the context wherein the signs are used (pragmatics) and (iii) dependent on their context the content specifity, i.e. its meaning (semantics). Rules of grammar are one of the characteristics sometimes said to distinguish language from other forms of communication. They allow a finite set of signs to be manipulated to create a potentially infinite number of grammatical utterances. However, this definition is self-circular. The structural relationships make sense only within language, the structure of language exists only in language. It is impossible to have a logically correct definition of a noun or verb. And logic itself concerns itself with propositions which are closely linked with content specificity i.e. semantics.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Language

I said that it is a pidgin because:

Pidgin: A mixed language, or jargon originally developed for purposes of trade, incorporating the vocabulary of one or more languages with a very simplified form of the grammatical system of one of these. (an examples of this would be Chinese pidgin which is based on the syntax of Mandarin but incorporates English words)

updated AGO 28, 2009
edited by Nathaniel
posted by Nathaniel
0
votes

However, I do not consider Spanglish to be a language, and only a valid form of communication if both participants have an understanding of BOTH languages (English and Spanish).

Nathaniel 9 mins ago

...i just to say with respect to you that it does not matter if YOU consider english spanish to be a language...the people communicate with that way all day so it must be a language. they dont say that well Nathan doesn't consider it to be language so we now stop talking it. they dont care. they want to know where esta the bano.

I study Spanish so that I can communicate with people in Mexico, Spain, etc. I want to travel and meet new people and make a genuine connection, and learning Spanish will help me do that. However, it must be a proper, standard, educated Spanish (just as my English is). Can you imagine me trying to communicate with spanglish in Oaxaca? I'd look like a complete idiot!

...i hope the people here not think i am complete idoit. i come here 10 year ago and my english is not good. i am manager at Purina where i make the food your dog eat. my worker are from all parts of latin america. i have to talk with them and they have to talk to me and i have to make understand what they say. am i an idiot for that? my childs don't think so when i put the food on the table and pay the bill.

updated AGO 28, 2009
edited by Toph
posted by aguacatona
Hi aguacatona - I just edited your post to make it more clear when you were quoting Nathaniel and Marianne. - Toph, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

i sorry teacher i not from school and i not studying. i just a girl who work with people who speak different languages. i could not do that what u do. i learn english and then i learn spanish because it is a part of my life of every day. i look up to you because you are very lucky you make choice to study language. i not so lucky it is something i do because that is the world i live in. when he come to me in english or in spanish i have to be ready or i wont know what he say. when my boss is angry he talk spanish and i have to know what he say. i don't write the english so good and i dont write the spanish so good either and i dont make the rule when he ask me how the words go. but when he talk to me or at lunch i know what he say no matter how fast they talking or what words they use.

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
I am sorry that you are in a situation where you are expected to understand what has not been taught to you and commend you on your efforts to understand. - Nathaniel, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

that guy Nathan is getting excited! Wow! maybe dont work with lots of people from different place so he dont know so much how it is in the real world. they talk spanish or what do u call it english spanish when they need to and the people make conversation. but i come from rusia and the people talk what maybe u call enlirusia. it is a little bit rusia and a little bit english. maybe when u meet more people in the world u know better. i am just saying i dont want u to make angry with me but it seem like a child talking to an adult when u say that!

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by aguacatona
I am not getting excited. I have lived in Argentina. I am in graduate school studying TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages). My responses have been objective (in my opinion). - Nathaniel, AGO 28, 2009
I recognize the difficulty in learning another language, and I engage in Spanglish when I am around speakers of both languages. - Nathaniel, AGO 28, 2009
However, I do not consider Spanglish to be a language, and only a valid form of communication if both participants have an understanding of BOTH languages (English and Spanish). - Nathaniel, AGO 28, 2009
I agree. If you speak Spanglish it's because you lack the skills to speak proper Spanish and/or English. - --Mariana--, AGO 28, 2009
0
votes

Nathanial said:

Spanglish....is basically unintelligible jargon for those who do not have an understanding of both languages.

I agree with Nathanial.

I study Spanish so that I can communicate with people in Mexico, Spain, etc. I want to travel and meet new people and make a genuine connection, and learning Spanish will help me do that. However, it must be a proper, standard, educated Spanish (just as my English is). Can you imagine me trying to communicate with spanglish in Oaxaca? I'd look like a complete idiot!

updated AGO 28, 2009
posted by --Mariana--
SpanishDict is the world's most popular Spanish-English dictionary, translation, and learning website.
© Curiosity Media Inc.