Sprachliches Selbstverständnis und sprachliche Realität: ein soziolinguistisches Experiment zum Gebrauch balearischer Artikel


  • Hans-Ingo Radatz Hannover




The Majorcan variety of spoken Catalan is different from the rest of the Catalan dialects, among other things in the area of the so-called articles salats ('salted articles'), derived from Latin IPSE. These articles constitute for most Majorcans the most important distinguishing feature of their dialect and are therefore perceived as a symbol of Majorcan linguistic identity, which many islanders see as equally threatened by Castilian as by standard Catalan. Their emotional connotations make them a very interesting sociolinguistic parameter because their use is governed by a set of subtle semantic rules. The Majorcan article-system has two subsystems of exceptions: a) after the preposition amb, the allomorph so(s) of the masculine article is used, and b) there is a group of nouns, which are traditionally incompatible with with the IPSE-article and always require the literary article, even in the spoken dialect.The experiment concentrates on the two rules of exception, which, due to their complexity, are easily affected by various extra-linguistic factors and lead to variation which may be interpreted as signs of "linguistic insecurity". The experiment consists of a part in which the 7 informants translate a questionnaire with 22 Spanish sentences into Majorcan and a second part, in which they have to answer questions of a sociological nature. The treatment of the exceptions is then compared with the language of Antoni Maria Alcover's folk-tales Rondaies Mallorquines, calculating the individual degree of deviation of each informant from Alcover's usage. In the individual studies of each informant, the possible relationships between sociological and linguistic factors are analysed.







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