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Re: [code-switching] South African data

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  • Nkonko Kamwangamalu
    Dear Ondene The idea of providing empirical evidence against the proposed constraints (Free morpheme constraint, Equivalence Constraint, Government constraint,
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 31, 2001
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      Dear Ondene
      The idea of providing empirical evidence against the proposed constraints (Free morpheme constraint, Equivalence Constraint, Government constraint, etc) on codeswitching is a good one. However, I am wondering whether you should not think about exploring a different topic. Over the past 25 years several studies (including some on CS in South Africa) have shown, overwhelmingly, that the proposed constraints are inadequate. You might find the following articles, in which I review the state of codeswitching research, useful.

      1999. The state of codeswitching research at the dawn of the new millennium (1): Focus on the global context. South African Journal of Linguistics 17, 4: 256-277.

      2000. The state of codeswitching research at the dawn of the new millennium (2): Focus on Africa. Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies 18: 59-71.

      An earlier article does also provide a useful collection of references on codeswitching: "A selected bibliography of studies on codemixing and codeswitching (1970-1988). World Englishes 8, 3: 433-439 (1989).

      All the best.

      Nkonko M Kamwangamalu
      Department of Linguistics
      University of Natal
      Durban 4041
      Republic of South Africa

      e-mail: kamwanga@...


      For a collection of references on codeswitching both in Africa and in the global context, see my articles "The State of Codeswitching Research at the turn of the millennium,


      >>> ovd@... 01/30/01 03:25PM >>>
      Dear Members
      My name is Ondene van Dulm and I am a lecturer at Stellenbosch
      University in South Africa. I have been following the discussions on
      the network for some time, and appreciate the insights I have
      gained. I am interested in writing an article on the constraints on
      code-switching. Besides discussing the theoretical issues involved,
      I am hoping to put together empirical evidence against some of the
      constraints that have been proposed, such as the Equivalence
      Constraint, Free Morpheme Constraint, Government Constraint,
      Constraint on Closed-class Items and Functional Head Constraint. I
      plan to take the Minimalist approach of Jeff McSwan, and hope to
      find further empirical evidence that "nothing constrains code-
      switching apart from the requirements of the mixed grammars"
      (McSwan 1999:14). Failing this, the article will lead to further work
      on a theory of what may constrain code-switching. What I am
      looking for is South African data against which I can test the various
      theories. I would like to use trilingual data if possible, eg English-
      Afrikaans-Xhosa, as this would add a new and interesting dimension
      to the article, but I would be satisfied with any South African code-
      switching data, as I am not aware of any researchers who have
      looked at South African data from this perspective as yet. I hope
      that someone out there can offer me some data, and please feel
      free to give me any suggestions as to how I should proceed. I am
      presently at the stage of literature review.
      Thank you.
      Ondene.


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