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Dominika SWOLKIEN 2013. Cape Verdean Creole – São Vicente. In Susanne Michaelis et al. (Eds.). The Survey of Pidgin and Creole Languages. Vol.2, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 20-30.

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Dominika SWOLKIEN 2013. Cape Verdean Creole – São Vicente. In Susanne Michaelis et al. (Eds.). The Survey of Pidgin and Creole Languages. Vol.2, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 20-30.
  Cape Verdean Creole of São Vicente 21cific sociohistoric factors—such as intensive racial mixing, lack of marked social distinctions, and the presence of metropolitan Portuguese prisoners and political outcasts—had an impact on the early stages of the variety’s formation. Though slavery was abolished on São Vicente only in 1857, it had never been an important factor in the island’s demograph-ics. According to the 1856 census, by which time São Vicente’s total population had grown to about 1,100, there were only 32 slaves on the island with 14 different owners (see Table 1 and Swolkien 2011+). None of the slaves spoke African languages; the overwhelming majority had been born on other Cape Ver-dean islands. The initially small language community grew steadily in spite of demographic fluctuations in years of famine and a gen-eral neglect of the island by the Portuguese colonial administra-tion. In 1838, with the establishment of British coal companies in Mindelo, São Vicente’s deep and safe bay rapidly turned into one of the busiest and most important Atlantic ports; its coal depots for the growing maritime steam transport, foreign con-sulates, and various telegraphic companies caused a spectacu-lar demographic boom from the 1850s onwards (Correia e Silva 2000). In a decade (1879 – 1889) the population grew by 75 per cent (Swolkien 2004: 183). Mindelo officially became a city in 1879; in the 1880s, up to 170,000 passengers passed annually through Mindelo, which turned into the biggest urban centre of the colony. Foreigners, especially English-speaking Gibral-tar Jews, opened businesses in the city and outnumbered the Portuguese-born inhabitants; thus, English has left its traces on the variety in some specific vocabulary related to sports and port jobs (see below). In that period, an intensive migration of Cape Verdeans from other islands, especially Santo Antão, cre-ated a heterogeneous linguistic situation; it is probable that the incoming peasants switched to a more prestigious urban variety of São Vicente Creole, levelling regional differences and intro-ducing new features (Holm & Swolkien 2006). By the end of the nineteenth century, a new, more stratified entrepreneurial society with a wealthy white and light-skinned mulatto bourgeoisie emerged, hampering social mobility. In this setting, Portuguese was established as the prestige language in a diglossic situation. Primary schooling (in Portuguese), though better than on other islands, was available only to an elite mi-nority (In 1917 the first non-secular secondary school in Cape Verde was opened in Mindelo), and only a minority of Creole speakers (mostly civil servants of lower ranks) were likely to ac-quire some kind of proficiency in Portuguese. The first half of the twentieth century was marked by the progressive decline in the port’s activities; in 1958 the last coal companies abandoned São Vicente (Swolkien 2011+), causing a profound economic crisis on the island and aggravating emi-gration to Europe and the United States. The independence of the country in 1975, the installation of a democratic multi-party political system, and the development of a market economy in the 1990s have increased foreign investments and tourism and greatly improved education (the island has six institutions of higher education), health, transportation, and port infrastruc-ture. As a result, Mindelo has become a cosmopolitan city, though it has remained small. Cidade VelhaNova Sintra  Praia Cape Verde Santo Antão São Vicente São NicolauSalBoa VistaMaioSantiagoFogoBrava AtlanticOcean B   a  r   l   a v   e  n  t  o   I   s   l   a   n  d    s       S  o  t  a  v  e  n  t  o  I  s  l  a  n  d   s  Map 2.Table 1.  Population numbers for the island of São Vicente (1795 – 1890) Europeansfree Cape VerdeansSlavesTotal1795: beginning of settlement c .70 c .60501801797: start of influx from Santo Antão–––2321821: first map of urban nucleus–––2981838: first British coaling company–––2001856: emancipation of slaves (1857) ––321,1001879: Mindelo becomes a city112 (Prtg.) ––3,7171890: peak of port activities–––6,881 2-03_capeverdianSaoVicente.indd 215/23/2012 9:13:56 AM  Dominika Swolkien 22 3.Sociolinguistic situation 3 Similar to other Cape Verdean islands after the independence of Cape Verde in 1975, Portuguese has held its position as an official language, while Creole is used in São Vicente’s daily life at home, in artistic contexts (e.g. in its very rich and inter-nationally acknowledged music), and in informal conversations in most public domains such as shops, banks, post offices, and governmental institutions. Characteristically, even in the Por-tuguese Consulate at Mindelo the use of Creole is widespread. Portuguese, overwhelmingly used in writing, is still pervasive in the media and schools (where code-switching is common) 4  and in formal situations. However, its use in electronic media var-ies, as informal e-mails, mobile messages, and chats are likely to be written in Creole. In blogs, often written by upper-class bi-linguals, Portuguese is more likely to be used, though the com-ments are often in Creole. Creole is the mother tongue of all São Vicente native inhab-itants, and it is commonly acquired by the children of immi-grants from mainland Africa, Europe, the Americas, and Asia. With its marina, international airport, and seaport, Mindelo has a markedly cosmopolitan character, with a small number of foreign professionals living on the island. It is not uncommon for children of Portuguese citizens to converse in Creole with their parents especially if they are the offspring of mixed un-ions. Sporadically, upper-class Cape Verdean parents may insist on speaking Portuguese to their children, behaviour that might also be socially ridiculed. Given the urban character of the São Vicente population, the main line of linguistic variation lies between the urban speech of the city of Mindelo and the speech of the inhabitants of the semi-rural hamlets and fishing villages. Because of the small size of the island and modern ease of contact between the speakers, these varieties are closely related and can be distin-guished from one another by a few phonetic and lexical features best analyzed in terms of social rather than geographical vari-ation. The city of Mindelo represents a highly stratified society in economic but also, to a considerable degree, in racial terms. A small elite is concentrated in and around a well-kept colonial city centre dating from the time of British economic predomi-nance, while the majority of the population dwells in areas on 3  There is not, to my present knowledge, a single systematic study of the São Vicente sociolinguistic situation; therefore, this section is based entirely on my fieldwork (2003 – 2005) and subsequent participant observation while living and working on the island. 4  In the time of the colonial rule the use of Creole in school was severely punished; today students and teachers freely converse in Creole outside the classroom, defying the classic diglossic situation. It is not uncommon for a teacher whose command of Portuguese is deficient to explain more difficult topics in Creole. The language of the teachers’ office is Creole. Meetings with parents are very likely to be held in São Vicente Creole as well. The court is an-other place where intensive code-switching takes place; witnesses speak in Cre-ole while the clerks register the speech in Portuguese heavily influenced by the mother tongue. the outskirts, which often resemble shanty towns. No variation-ist study on this variety is available yet. Nevertheless, what can be observed is that the speech of the upper middle class, often educated in Portugal or Brazil, is highly acrolectal and marked by lexical borrowings and morpho-syntactic interference from Portuguese. The island of São Vicente presents the lowest illiteracy lev-els in the country (16% in 2000). Due to the democratization of secondary education and the wide-ranging offer of higher education institutes, access to Portuguese is now available to the majority of the population. However, a high level of compe-tence in European Portuguese, the equivalent of a passport to a reduced job market, is still available only to the very few upper middle class speakers educated in Portugal. The island strongly identifies with Europe and having dual citizenship (American or European) is appreciated in symbolic terms. Command of English is highly valued socially. People who have emigrated to Europe (especially Portugal, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands) often visit their relatives on the islands and speak a Creole that is perceived as archaic. The speakers of Atlantic and Chinese lan-guages, that is, immigrants from mainland Africa and the Asian community, tend to segregate themselves and are often segre-gated by Cape Verdeans. The language is is not written very much. This is largely due to the local elite’s resistance to accepting the official ALUPEC orthography, 5  which, in the minds of speakers, reflects the So-tavento but not the São Vicente variety. No standard orthography exists, and the few existing texts, such as humoristic columns in the newspaper and billboard advertisements, are spelled unsystematically. No television channel or radio station broadcasts entirely in Creole since Portuguese is the main language of these media; moreover, the variety that is most heard in the media on São Vicente is the Santiago one since the national radio and television stations are located in Santiago. An acute awareness of the variety’s distinctiveness is wide-spread among native speakers, who immediately distinguish São Vicente Creole from varieties srcinating on other Bar-lavento islands, even the Santo Antão variety, which seems to be very closely related. The Sotavento varieties, especially that of Santiago, are commonly considered as “incomprehensi-ble”, not only because of real linguistic differences but also of the regional rivalries and prejudices. Radio and television pro-grammes in the Santiago variety have increased inter-island linguistic contact, and migrations have reduced this negative perception, especially among young speakers. Written historical texts and grammars of the São Vicente variety are even fewer than those for the Santiago variety. The variety was first mentioned in Botelho da Costa & Duarte 5    Alfabeto Unificado para a Escrita do Cabo-Verdiano , an orthography adopted in 1998 on experimental terms. In this chapter, all examples are given in ALUPEC with a slight modification. 2-03_capeverdianSaoVicente.indd 225/23/2012 9:13:57 AM  Cape Verdean Creole of São Vicente 23(1886). Fernandes’s (1991) dictionary and Almada’s (1961) grammatical description make sporadic reference to the São Vi-cente variety. Veiga (1982) is the first grammatical description which strictly separates the São Vicente variety from the other varieties of Cape Verdean Creole. The first scholarly article that was dedicated solely to this variety is Pereira (2000). 4. Phonology São Vicente Creole has a vowel system of eight oral vowel phonemes  (see Table 2), all of them with a nasal counterpart (nasality of the vowels is represented by ⟨ n ⟩  following the vowel). Table 2.  Vowels FrontCentralBackCloseiuMide  ɐ   ⟨ a ⟩ oOpen  ɛ   ⟨ é ⟩ a ⟨ á ⟩  ɔ   ⟨ ó ⟩ Low or open vowels occur only in stressed syllables. Vowels in unstressed syllables are often reduced to a high central vowel [ ɨ ] or deleted, a tendency that parallels modern European Portu-guese. Apart from monophthongs there are a number of rising and falling diphthongs, composed of a vowel and a voiced palatal / j / ⟨ i ⟩  or a labio-velar approximant [w] ⟨ u ⟩  (  guardá  [gw ɐ r ˈ da] ‘to save’,  pai   [p ɐ j] ‘father’). Nasal diphthongs such as  pão  [p ɐ̃ w] ‘bread’ are typical of acrolectal speech, alternating with nasal monophthongs in the basilect (  pon  [põ]). São Vicente Creole has 18 oral and three nasal consonan-tal phonemes  (see Table 3). The alveolar trill is often realized as a uvular trill. [  ʃ  ] and [s] are in complementary distribution: [  ʃ  ] appears before voiceless consonants and in word-final pos-ition (  skóla  [ ˈʃ  k ɔ l ɐ ] ‘school’, más  [ma  ʃ  ] ‘more’). / ʎ /  is a marginal phoneme. [  ʃ  ] and [t  ʃ  ] often alternate: xuva  ~  txuva  ‘rain’. Complex two- and three-consonantal syllable  onsets ( tr  á ‘  take away’, str  agód   ‘spoilt’) and complex codas ( ó  lt   ‘tall’,  po rks  ‘pigs-󰁐󰁌’) are common.  Word stress  is generally placed on the penultimate syllable. But contrary to other varieties of Cape Verdean Creole, verbs are always stressed on the last vowel. 5. The noun phrase 6 There is no morphological case marking on São Vicente Cre-ole nouns . Natural gender  is indicated by different lexemes ( katxór   ‘dog’ vs. kadéla  ‘bitch’), by derived forms ( diretor   ‘di-rector (male)’ vs. diretora  ‘director (female)’), or by postposed sex-denoting words ( txukin mótx  ‘male piglet’ vs. txukin féma  ‘female piglet’), though the latter strategy is becoming obsolete, especially when the referent is human. Modifying adjectives  follow the noun. The position pre-ceding the noun is marked and affects the adjective’s semantics as in un    grand    amig  ‘a good friend’ vs. un amig    grand   ‘a friend who is a big person’. Animacy plays an important role in the grammar of the lan-guage. Adjectives in both attributive and predicative position obligatorily agree in natural gender with human nouns (e.g. un amdjer     prigóza  ‘a dangerous woman’, un óm    prigoz  ‘a dangerous man’ vs. un aventura    prigoz  ‘a dangerous adventure’); only ex-ceptionally do they agree with nouns having an inanimate ref-erent, constituting in those cases structures borrowed directly from the lexifier, related to the semantic fields of education and administration (e.g. un próv a    stern a  ‘an external exam’, kónt  a    própri  a , ‘own account’; cf. Portuguese uma prova externa , uma conta própria ). There is a wide range of number marking  strategies. Plur-ality can be inferred from the context or indicated on the first element in the noun phrase such as the plural forms of articles, demonstratives, possessives, or by numerals and quantifiers. There is also a plural suffix -  s , though its use is variable. Fac-tors such as context, animacy, specificity, and language contact play an important role in determining whether a noun will take a plural marker. Inflectional plural marking on human nouns, as in (1), represents a stable tendency while the use of the suffix on inanimate nouns is an exception and can be ascribed to recent borrowings from the lexifier which have often not been phono-logically integrated (e.g. meius d’komunikasãu  ‘the media’; cf. Portuguese meios de comunicação ).(1) [. . .]  k    psoa-s   malkriód ka te prendê.  󰁃󰁏󰁍󰁐 person-󰁐󰁌 rude 󰁎󰁅󰁇 󰁔󰁍󰁁 learn‘[. . .] that rude people don’t learn.’ 6 All examples are from Swolkien (2011+) or from Swolkien’s (2003 – 2005) fieldwork. Table 3.  Consonants       B      i      l    a      b      i    a      l      L    a      b      i    o      d    e    n     t    a      l      A      l    v    e    o      l    a    r      P    o    s     t    a      l    v    e    o      l    a    r      P    a      l    a     t    a      l      V    e      l    a    r PlosivevoicelessptkvoicedbdgNasalmn  ɲ   ⟨ nh ⟩ TrillrTap  ɾ   ⟨ r ⟩ Fricativevoicelessfs  ʃ    ⟨ x ⟩ voicedvz  ʒ   ⟨ j ⟩ Affricatevoicelesst  ʃ    ⟨ tx ⟩ voicedd  ʒ   ⟨ dj ⟩ Laterall  ʎ   ⟨ lh ⟩ 2-03_capeverdianSaoVicente.indd 235/23/2012 9:13:57 AM  Dominika Swolkien 24There are two demonstratives . Es  [es] ‘this’ is the proximal demonstrative; kel   ‘that’ is the distal demonstrative. Both show the plural forms es  [e  ʃ  ] ‘these’ and kes  ‘those’. Both admit pro-nominal and adnominal use and can be combined with the spa-tial adverbs li   ‘here’ and la  ‘there’ ( es   vapor    li  ‘this steamship here’ vs. kel    vapor    la  ‘that steamship there’). This dual deictic distinction is not necessarily spatial as it may be temporal. There is a preposed indefinite article   un  ‘a’ (plural uns ). There is evidence that the demonstrative kel   ‘the’ (plural kes ) acquires the value of a definite article  in associative contexts, though the process is still in an initial stage. In (2), kel pedra  ‘the stone’ refers in an associative way to anel   ‘the ring’.(2)  Toi dá-m un anel má mi N perdê    kel  Toi give-󰀱󰁓󰁇 󰁉󰁎󰁄󰁆.󰁁󰁒󰁔.󰁓󰁇 ring but 󰀱󰁓󰁇 󰀱󰁓󰁇 lose 󰁄󰁅󰁆.󰁁󰁒󰁔.󰁓󰁇  pedra. stone‘Toi gave me a ring but I lost the stone.’ Personal pronouns  can be classified into dependent subject and object pronouns and independent pronouns. The latter carry stress while the dependent subject and object pronouns and the adnominal (pre posed) possessives are unstressed. As shown in Table 4, there is no gender distinction with per-sonal pronouns. A binary politeness distinction is made in sec-ond person. In polite second-person and plural the stressed in de pen dent pronouns are used for the object function.   Possession  is marked by juxtaposition. Unstressed adnom-inal possessives  precede the noun; the form of the possessive (singular or plural) indicates the number of the possessum ( nha bot   ‘my boat’ vs. nhas fidj   ‘my children’), though in cases of hom-ophonous plural forms (  ses kaza  ‘their house / houses’) the num-ber of the possessum is inferred from the context. Independent pronominal possessives  consist of a prepos-ition de  ‘of’ (contracted to d’ ) and an independent personal pro-noun ( d’nos  ‘ours’, d’bzot   ‘yours’) or a preposition and a special form ( d’meu  ‘mine’, d’seu  ‘his, hers’). The same forms function as stressed adnominal possessives which follow the noun ( un fidj d’bosa  ‘a son of yours’, un irmon d’minha  ‘a brother of mine’). In possessor noun phrases  the possessor follows the pos-sessum; the construction is invariant and the presence of the preposition de  ‘of’ is obligatory ( káza d’un senhor   ‘the house of a gentleman’). There are two ( pro ) noun conjunctions : má  ‘and’, as in (3), which overlaps with the comitative má  ‘with’ and  y  [i] ‘and’. Personal pronouns can be overtly conjoined with a personal name or with other NPs (e.g. mi     y   nha mai   ‘my mother and I’).(3)   Mi má Adrianu   trubaiá djunt n’un bark. 󰀱󰁓󰁇 and / with Adrianu work together 󰁐󰁒󰁅󰁐.󰁄󰁅󰁔 ship‘Adrianu and I worked together on a ship.’ Generic nouns  are unmarked as in (4). In comparative constructions  of equality, the standard is marked by moda  ‘as’ and the adjective is unmarked:(4)  Kavála e kór    moda   atun. mackerel 󰁃󰁏󰁐 expensive as tuna‘Mackerel is as expensive as tuna.’In comparative constructions of superiority, the adjective is marked by má (  s ) ‘more’ and the standard by diki  / k / duki  / d’k  ‘than’:(5)  Kavála e   má ( s )  kór diki / k / duki / d’k   atun. mackerel 󰁃󰁏󰁐 more expensive than tuna‘Mackerel is more expensive than tuna.’Comparative constructions of inferiority are avoided. The su-perlative is expressed by the same construction with a universal standard marked by k  or de  ( d’ ) ‘of’:(6)   Atun e   má ( s )  kór k / d’    tud pex. tuna 󰁃󰁏󰁐 more expensive of all fish‘Tuna is the most expensive of all fish.’The numerals  from 1 to 10 are un ,  dos ,  tres ,  kuát  ,  sink ,  seis ,  sét  ,  oit  ,  nóv ,  dés . 6. Verb phrase São Vicente Creole verbs show no person, number, or gender morphology. Contrary to Cape Verdean Creole of Santiago, they do not show tense or aspect suffixes. Un mar ked forms of stative verbs  tend to have present-time  reference, whereas unmarked dynamic verbs  tend to have past (perfective) reference.(7) a. N    krê     sink sebóla.  󰀳󰁓󰁇 want five onion ‘I want five onions.’b. El    toká    y el    kantá . 󰀳󰁓󰁇 play and 󰀳󰁓󰁇 sing ‘He played and sang.’ Table 4.  Personal pronouns, adnominal and pronominal possessives Dep. SubjectDep.ObjectIndep. Pron.AdnominalPossessivesPronominalPossessives󰁓󰁇󰁐󰁌󰀱󰁓󰁇N -m minhanhas d’meu ,  d’minha 󰀲󰁓󰁇 bo-bbobobosd’bo , d’bosa 󰀲󰁓󰁇.󰁐󰁏󰁌󰁉󰁔󰁅 bosêbosêbosêbosêsd’bosê  󰀳󰁓󰁇 el-lelsesesd’seu 󰀱󰁐󰁌 no-nosnosnosnosd’nos , d’nosa 󰀲󰁐󰁌 bzotbzotbzotbzotd’bzot  󰀲󰁐󰁌.󰁐󰁏󰁌󰁉󰁔󰁅 bosêsbosêsbosêsbosêsd’boses 󰀳󰁐󰁌 es-sessessesd’es , d’seus 2-03_capeverdianSaoVicente.indd 245/23/2012 9:13:57 AM
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