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  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

    1/16

    Pragmatics

    :4.46548O

    International

    ragmatics

    ssociation

    TOWARDS

    A PRAGMATIC

    APPROACH

    TO THE STUDY

    OF

    LANGUAGES N CONTACT:

    EVIDENCE

    FROM

    LANGUAGE

    CONTACT

    CASES N SPAIN

    Joan

    A. Argente

    and Lluis

    Payrat6

    0.

    Abs t rac t

    The

    study of

    language

    contact has

    been traditionally

    carried out

    from a structural

    perspective

    (synchronic

    or diachronic),

    from

    a

    sociolinguistic

    perspective

    and/or

    from

    a rather

    psychological perspective,

    centered n

    the

    linguistic

    and communicativecompetence

    of

    the

    multilingual

    individual.

    However, a

    great

    number

    of

    linguistic

    and sociolinguistic topics

    thatappear

    n

    language ontact situations

    may

    be

    productively

    tackled

    from

    a

    pragmatic

    iewpoint.

    This

    pragmatic perspective

    akes nto

    account

    inguistic

    use

    n

    communication

    ontexts and

    raises,

    at a different

    level,

    questions

    hat

    deal

    with

    the structures

    and the evolution of the codes

    n

    contact.

    The

    main

    aim of

    this

    presentation

    s

    the analysis of some of the

    specific

    problems

    that arise

    in given language contact situations

    from

    a

    pragmatic erspective, onsidering he adaptationprocessesof the speakers,

    their

    particular interactive

    strategies and

    the social meaning

    generated.

    Understanding

    ragmatics

    in

    its

    original senss,

    i.e.

    as

    the

    study of the

    relationship etween

    inguistic signs

    and

    speakers

    users

    of certain

    resources),

    these

    henomena

    hould be understoodas

    the

    result

    of speakers' daptation o

    changing

    sociocultural circumstances.

    This

    adaptat ion creates

    a new

    distribution

    f

    the

    verbal

    resources

    or

    linguistic

    economy)

    of the community

    and,

    consequently,

    modifies

    its varieties

    as

    far

    as form and

    function

    are

    concerned.l

    I

    An

    earlier,

    shorter version of

    this

    paper

    was delivered

    as

    an oral

    presentation

    t

    the

    1990 International

    Pragmatics

    Conference

    Barcelona,

    9

    -

    13.VII.1990).

    he

    authors

    hank

    Anxo

    Lorenzo for

    comments on

    the

    data

    presented.

  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

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    466

    Joan

    A. Argente

    and

    Llu{s

    Pawat1

    Introduction and aims

    The main

    aim

    of

    this contribution

    s

    to

    show

    that:

    (a)

    the

    study of

    languages n

    contact

    may

    take advantageof a

    pragmatic

    approach,and

    that

    (b)

    pragmatics

    as a discipline

    may benefit in more

    than one

    way from

    the

    data obtained

    in the

    analysis

    of language

    contact, basically

    in

    the

    following aspects:

    (i)

    the

    multilingual individual

    and

    his

    communicativebehaviour,

    (ii)

    the

    processes

    f languagemaintenance

    nd

    anguage

    shift,

    and

    (iii)

    the

    processes

    f the adoptionand adaptation f

    linguistic

    elements

    originally

    foreign

    to a code, hat

    is to

    say,

    nterference.

    2. The analysis of

    language

    contact

    Languagecontacthas

    never

    been

    considereda central

    domain

    for

    linguistics.Rather, t has been

    understood

    as a

    peripheral

    area, rrelevant

    o

    linguistic

    thought,

    and sometimeseven

    purely

    anecdotalor

    marginal.

    The

    reasonswhy this has been so

    are

    obviously diverse,but the more

    important

    of

    them

    have to do with the

    prevailing

    conception about

    the

    boundaries

    of

    linguistics

    s

    a science.

    Nuances

    different approaches

    issuehave

    been:

    (a)

    the study

    from

    thirties),

    (b) the study from

    (c)

    the study

    from

    or changes

    in

    this conception

    have

    determined

    the

    advanced.

    The

    main

    lines developed

    n

    the study of this

    a

    historical

    point

    of

    view

    (XIX

    and

    XX

    century

    up

    to the

    a structural oint of view (1930'sup to 1953),and

    a sociolinguistic

    oint

    of

    view

    (1953

    onwards).

    While

    structural ism

    prevails

    al l along

    the

    first

    half of

    our

    century,

    ater on

    sociolinguistics

    eplaces

    hat

    perspective.

    Weinreich's

    book,

    issued in 1953,

    surely

    the main

    work

    even

    now

    in

    the study of

    language

    contact,

    represents he

    bridge

    between both

    conceptions.

    t starts

    from

    a

    structural

    basis but establishes

    or

    the

    first

    time the

    necessity

    of taking into

    account he sociocultura l

    background

    of

    contact.

    Two

    complementary

    ines

    --even

    geographically

    istinct-- should

    still be

    pointed

    out:

    firstly,

    anthropological

    inguistics n

    the

    U.S.A.,

    which in

    part

    resul ts

    in

    the ethnography of communicat ion,

    and

    secondly

    psycholinguist ics in

    Europe, mainly

    concerned

    with

    the

    problem

    of

    bilingualism

    since

    the

    mid

    twenties of this century.

    In

    the latter case

    the

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  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

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    468

    Joan A. Argcnte

    nnd Lluis Pnyat1

    This notion,

    as expounded and analyzed by and

    large

    by

    Verschueren

    (1987)

    may

    be one of the

    more

    signif icant

    theoret ical

    contributions of

    pragmatics

    to the ana lysis of

    language

    contact.

    Leaving

    macrosociolinguistic

    rocesses

    side, his adaptation

    s

    constantly

    produced

    by

    the subjects'communicativeactivity, basically

    n language

    choice, n code-

    switching and

    in interference.

    A

    pragmatic perspective,

    useful and applicable o the analysis of

    languagecontact

    must necessarily

    be broad and

    integrative in

    such a way

    as

    to

    include

    all the

    factors

    --diverse

    in

    origin and

    nature--

    present

    in

    multilingual situations.CharlesW. Monis (1938:30)worded it precisely n

    these errns:

    it

    is

    a

    sufficiently accuratecharacterization f

    pragmatics

    o say

    that

    i t

    deals

    with

    the

    biot ic aspectsof semiosis, hat

    is,

    with

    al l the

    psychological,

    biological, and sociological

    phenomena

    which

    occur

    in

    the

    functioning

    of signs.

    Indeed

    the biological

    parallelism

    in many issues

    of language

    contact

    has hardly been explored.

    To

    give

    an example,

    which will

    be dealt

    with further on,

    let

    us

    mention

    the

    notion of mimetism applied to

    interference.

    In the same ine the conceptof adaptationbecomesmore significant and may

    be understoodas the users'

    esponse

    o their environment as

    well

    as

    its

    effect

    on their

    languages,

    with the

    aim

    of

    improving

    and accommodating he verbal

    resourcesof the community.

    To

    paraphrase

    a typical ly sociol inguist ic

    formulation, the

    question

    may

    be

    put

    in the following way:

    who

    adapts what,

    who

    adapts o

    whom,

    rvhen,how

    and

    why?

    4.

    The

    process

    of

    l inguist ic interference

    The

    phenomena

    alled code-switching

    and code-mixinghave been

    accounted

    for

    traditionally,

    and even

    more

    so

    lately, from

    a

    pragmatic

    viewpoint

    (cf.

    Gumperz

    1970,, 912, 1982;

    Auer 1983, Heller

    (ed.)

    1988).

    Leaving

    them

    aside,

    we may

    concentrate

    on the domain of

    interference,

    which,

    in

    contradistinction

    o the

    former,

    has hardly

    ever been approached

    n

    this

    way

    (cf.

    Auer

    1983,Flores

    &

    Valiflas

    1987).

    Linguistic

    interferencemay be understood,

    generally

    speaking,

    as

    an induced language change, hat is to say, as a processby which some

    elements,originally

    foreign to a

    given

    language,

    are used by

    its

    speakers

    (Payrat6

    1985:2.2.).

    The

    apparent

    reason

    for

    this use

    is

    in

    principle

    the

    speakers'

    nowledge

    of other

    languages

    or else the

    fact

    that their

    linguistic

    competencedoes

    not refer

    to only one code.

    However,

    the

    real

    account

    for

    interference

    s not

    given

    by

    this

    knowledge

    being

    mixed

    at

    random,

    as it were,

    in linguistic

    production.

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    The study

    f languagesn contact 469

    One must suppose hat certain factors influence the processes f

    interference

    ecisively.

    What

    is

    more,

    avoiding a

    purist

    and academic

    misconception,

    o

    frequently

    held around romance

    languages,

    one must

    suppose hat the

    processes

    of

    interference mply

    some kind

    of

    gain

    for

    languages

    nd

    their users, at

    least in

    terms of the adaptative biological

    standpoint

    aken

    before.

    From

    a

    pragmatic

    viewpoint, this verbal

    improvement

    shows up

    in

    expressiveness,

    unctionality,

    explicitness,economy of

    resources n

    the

    processes

    f

    languageproduction

    and understanding,&fld in

    mechanisms

    of

    informationstorage.

    After

    all,

    that

    is what

    can

    explain in a more real and

    deeper

    way

    the appearance f

    interference

    phenomena

    between

    anguages n

    contact.

    Interferencehardly ever

    obeys a

    single

    factor. In

    this sense,

    t

    seemso be an

    ideal field

    for

    the

    analysisof

    the

    central topics in

    pragmatics:

    the

    nterdependencef social and cognitive aspectsof

    language

    use.

    This

    can

    be

    ascertained

    ither

    for individual interference n

    speechor

    for

    interference

    in language s

    a social code

    (Weinreich

    1953:2.14.).These actors

    may be

    ananged long he following three axes:

    (a)

    the

    sociocultural

    value

    of

    languages n contact,

    in

    other

    words,

    the

    socioculturalbackground of

    languages:

    he

    specific sociolinguistic

    dimension,

    (b)

    the

    particular

    raits of subjects,

    heir

    (in)capacity

    o

    keep

    both

    codes

    separate

    n

    use,

    and also the

    individual

    attitudes

    owards the

    languages,

    the specific

    psycholinguistic

    dimension,and

    astly

    (c)

    the contextual

    features, that

    is

    to say,

    the

    specific

    setting of speech

    eventsand the relationshipbetween nterlocutors.

    5.

    Funct ions of in ter ference

    in language maintenance

    and

    language

    shift

    If interference

    s

    analyzed

    not

    only as a

    strictly structural fact,

    but

    rather

    as

    a

    phenomenonwith a functional capacity,

    it

    can be shown to

    characterize

    issimilar

    long-term

    processes.2

    So,

    interference

    through

    borrowing, nitiated mainly in the lexicon, usually characterizes anguage

    maintenance

    rocesses

    nd

    s

    proper

    o

    people

    who

    show

    resistanceo

    2

    The

    ideas

    n the

    present

    paragraph

    have mainly

    been drawn

    from

    the

    analysis

    resented

    n

    Argente

    (1989).

  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

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    470 Joan A. Argente and Llu{s Pnyat6

    language

    shift.

    As a consequence, he direction

    of

    interference

    runs

    from

    a

    dominant o

    a

    recessive anguage.

    Otherwise,

    interference

    hrough

    shift

    --or

    substratumeffect--,

    originated

    mainly

    in

    phonic

    and syntactic

    structures,usually characterizes

    language

    shift.

    Generally speaking,

    t is

    proper

    to

    people

    who

    move

    towards

    the adoption

    of a

    new

    language.

    Consequently,

    t runs from

    a

    recessive

    towards a

    dominant

    anguage.

    Thus,

    in

    the specific

    historical

    Catalan

    Spanish

    anguage

    contact

    situation,

    traditionally borrowing

    from

    Spanish

    nto

    Catalan

    has

    been

    proper

    to autochthonous

    speakers,

    while

    nowadays interference through shift

    characterizes

    he speech

    of Spanish

    allochthonous

    speakersadopting the

    Catalan

    anguage.

    Without

    considering

    the consequences

    f this

    fact for

    the

    evolution

    of the

    Catalan

    language, hese two types

    of

    interference

    calry out

    very different

    functions.

    The main function

    of

    interference

    hrough shift

    is

    to

    facilitate the

    learning and use of another

    anguageby Spanish speakers,and

    can result n the emergence f a new language ariety, in this casea Catalanas

    second

    anguagevariety.

    In contrast,borrowing

    does

    not facilitate

    the

    learning

    of any

    new

    language.

    Rather,

    as a

    matter of

    fact, its

    objective

    result is

    to

    functionally

    restrict and

    in

    the end to

    formally

    disintegrate

    he autochthonous

    language.

    Although these

    processes

    are evaluated

    n

    a very different

    way

    depending

    on

    the users'

    nvolvement, both cases

    may

    be

    qualified

    as adaptive

    strategies

    of these users

    to changing

    sociocultural

    factors. In

    this sense

    one

    might

    hold interference o

    be one of the

    linguistic mechanisms

    producing

    direct consequences

    n

    the

    macrosociol inguist ic

    processes

    of

    language

    maintenance nd anguageshift.

    Finally,

    interferencealso

    has an adaptive

    function as far as

    it

    concerns

    he

    verbal

    repertoireof the community,

    and

    goes

    hand in hand with

    sociolinguistic

    rocesses

    f expansion

    r

    retraction.So, n the caseof Catalan

    Spanishcontact,

    borrowing

    does

    not

    imply

    an

    increase n

    the

    social basis of

    the Catalan

    speech

    community,

    but

    fumishes t with someexpressive

    esources

    that

    wil l al low

    this community

    to accommodate

    o

    new

    circumstances,

    although

    it will

    keep

    the

    community

    in

    a sociolinguistically subordinate

    posit ion.

    Instead,

    interference hrough shift contributes

    in

    principle

    to

    increasing the

    social basis

    of the

    languagecommunity and to broadening

    ts

    verbal

    repertoire.

    Again,

    we

    see

    how

    interference

    offers

    itself

    as

    an adaptative

    strategy

    in order

    for the community

    to

    give

    a

    linguistic response o the

    pressure

    exerted

    by socioecological

    and

    sociopsychological ircumstances.Or,

  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

    7/16

    The

    srudy

    of

    languages

    n

    contact

    47I

    adaptation

    ppears

    n

    both

    cases

    as

    a reciprocal

    relationship

    betweensubjectsand he environmental

    actors

    ust

    mentioned

    --precisely

    those

    modifying

    t1.

    system

    of

    sociocultural

    values

    and

    functions

    that

    were prevailing

    UJfore

    contact.

    6.

    Inter ference

    as

    an

    adapt ive

    st rategy

    of

    speakers

    in

    pragmatically

    elevant

    contexts

    It

    is

    generally

    assumed

    hat

    while

    code-switching

    s

    either

    a

    strategy o convey social meaning or a rhetorical

    device

    employed

    in

    the

    construction

    of

    discourse,

    interference

    is

    an

    automatic,

    non-monitored.

    structurally

    ll-embracing

    mechanism.

    However,

    one

    cannot

    dismiss

    the

    possibi l i ty

    of

    f inding

    interference

    phenomena

    used

    to

    convey

    social

    meaning

    ind

    rhetorical

    functions.

    Facts

    of

    this

    kind

    may

    be

    observed

    in

    ethnogiaphic

    fieldwork

    centered

    pon

    verbal

    nteraction

    n

    small population

    groups.-

    6.L.

    Presentat ion

    f

    the

    data

    As

    a matter

    of fact,

    some

    cases

    of what

    we

    have

    in

    mind

    have

    been ecorded

    y

    Lorenzo

    (1990)

    in

    the

    course

    of ethnographic

    ieldwork

    in

    a

    1ma.ll

    peech

    ommunity

    near

    Vigo,

    a Galician

    seaport-in

    ne North-West

    of

    spain,where

    Galician

    -

    Spanish

    anguage

    ontact

    ak^eslace.3

    While

    searching

    for

    Galician

    inherent

    variat ion,

    Lorenzo

    observedhat in a- anguagecontactsetting nherentvariablesmay come about

    as

    a result

    of the

    speakers'

    ntentional

    reallocation

    of veibal

    material

    originally

    proceding

    rom

    language

    contact phenomena,

    uch

    as

    certain

    kinds

    of

    interference

    -that

    is

    to

    say,

    language

    contact

    ums

    out

    to

    be

    the

    source

    of

    inherent

    ariation

    n

    such

    a setting.

    Thus,

    Lorenzo

    notes

    that in

    spontaneous

    anguage

    use

    certain

    systematic

    lternances

    ake

    place

    n

    some

    words

    between

    uaiianis

    that

    we

    will

    characterize,

    espectively,

    as

    an

    autochthonous

    ariant

    and

    the

    corresponding

    3

    The

    ethnographic

    ieldwork

    was

    carried

    out

    in

    the

    parish

    of

    Coiro,

    within

    the village

    of

    Cangas

    de Morrazo.

    Galician

    is

    the

    autochthonous

    language

    f

    Galicia,

    and

    is

    habitual ly

    used

    by

    a

    people

    whose

    main

    socioeconomic

    ctivities

    are related

    to

    agriculture,

    cattla

    raising,

    fishing

    and

    merchant

    avy.

  • 7/24/2019 Language Incontact

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    472

    Joan A.

    Argente

    nnd Lluis Payat6

    allochthonous

    solution,

    for

    instancesingle

    ower

    mid vowel versus

    diphthong:

    lel

    I

    [je]

    and

    Ic

    ]

    /

    [we],

    or

    voiceless

    palatal

    fricative

    versusvoiceless

    velar

    fricative:

    S

    /

    [x].

    As is

    shown

    n

    cases

    1)

    to

    (3)

    below:a

    (1a)

    El

    nunca

    sufriu

    na

    sfa

    pel

    o

    m[e

    ]do

    do

    mar

    e os

    desastres

    'He

    himself

    never suffered

    he

    fear

    of the seaand

    the

    disasters'

    (lb)

    A

    trampa

    que

    lle est6n acendo5

    gobffe]rno

    6 tremenda

    'The

    government

    is

    about to

    fall into

    a

    tenible

    trap'

    (2a) Anteshabiamoitosblc

    ]is

    labrando

    'In

    the

    old

    days

    there were many

    oxen to

    plough

    (2b)

    O comercioen

    Pontevedra on

    est6 an

    alto

    en

    imp[we]stos

    omo

    en

    Vigo

    'Taxes

    upon

    trading are

    not as high in Pontevedra

    as they are in

    Vigo'

    (3a) Candoeranova. am6nanduven melS il6n

    'When

    I was

    young,

    I

    also went to

    harvestmussels'

    (3b)

    ConxuntamenteCoiro e

    Tirdn eran

    antes

    partido

    Ix]udicial

    'Coiro

    and

    Tir6n were

    once one administrative district'

    Traditionally,

    these

    differences

    have

    been consideredas lexical

    facts, with no more

    qualification

    than treating

    (b)-cases

    s

    instances

    of

    lexical

    borrowing, i .e. as loanwords, while considering (a)-casesas tradit ional

    words.5 Now, Lorenzo's contention

    s

    that

    they must be

    analysed

    as inherent

    4

    These

    data are

    fragments

    of

    natural

    conversations

    ecorded

    by

    Lorenzo,

    and

    include other casesof

    interference

    besides

    hose studied. The

    choice

    of examples

    and English translationsare our

    own,

    and they should

    not

    be taken

    for

    granted

    as the

    best. Variables other

    than

    those

    presented

    have

    been investigated,with similar results. Alternancesare but one of the

    structural

    results derived from

    language

    contact.

    5

    Actually

    we

    are

    in

    the

    presence

    of correspondence

    ules

    or what was

    termed

    automatic

    conversion

    ormulae

    by Weinreich

    (1953:1.2.),

    .e.

    rules

    that establish

    interlinguistic

    equivalencesand diminish the

    psycholinguistic

    burden

    of bilinguals.

    From Lorenzo's standpoint these rules

    would have

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    The study of languages in contact 473

    phonological

    ariables,used by local speakers n

    order to discriminate socio-

    symbolic aluesof legal cunency within the

    community.

    Indeed,

    a case

    s

    made that the

    single

    vowel

    and

    IS

    ]

    variants

    appear

    redominantly

    n

    so-called ocal

    words,

    that

    is

    to say, words referring

    to loca l socioeconomicactivities

    and

    homely

    life. Instead,

    the

    imported

    diphthongand

    [x]

    variants appear

    in

    so-cal led

    non-local

    words,

    i .e.,

    vocabulary

    elative

    to

    activities, nstitutions

    or

    facts

    originated outside

    the

    speech

    ommunity.

    These systematic alternances affect both nominal and verbal

    items.Restricting

    ourselves o

    nominal

    elements

    and

    vowel

    variables,

    et

    us

    apply a new seriesof

    cases

    classified according

    to

    the

    mentioned

    distinction

    andsubclassified

    ollowing several elevant

    opics:

    ( i )

    (A )

    (B)

    [c ]

    in local

    contexts

    Lexical

    items

    n merchantnavy

    or

    fishing

    contexts:

    Candonon

    se

    via.

    usaban

    un

    cordel e unha

    p[e

    ]dra

    'When

    they

    could no longer see,

    hey used a cord and

    a

    stone'

    Lexical

    tems

    n

    peasant

    ontexts:

    Mifla irm6

    Manuela oi

    apaflar

    a h[e

    ]rba

    6s

    h[c

    ]rtas

    do cura

    'My

    sister

    Manuela went to

    cut down

    some herbage from

    the

    parson's

    orchards'

    Lexical

    items

    n homely

    life contexts:

    Eu fago

    abores

    a

    casa.

    nin n[e

    ]tos

    nin fillos

    'I

    work

    at home,

    neither

    grandchildren

    nor

    children'

    [we]

    in

    non-local

    contexts

    Lexical items n

    trade contexts:

    Pero

    a

    maiorfa dos

    p[we]stos

    son

    de toda

    a vida.

    sempre

    veflen

    'But

    the most of these stalls

    have

    been

    here

    forever,

    they always

    come

    '

    l eL

    (4)

    (s)

    (c)

    (6)

    ( i

    )

    Liel,

    (D)

    (1)

    ceasedo be

    interlingual.

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    474

    Joan A.

    Argente

    and

    Lluis Payat6

    (E )

    Lexical items n Administrationcontexts:

    Estamos

    no r6gimen

    especial

    agrario.

    por

    c[we]nta

    propia.

    agraria

    'We

    are subject

    to

    the

    system

    for

    self-employed

    agricultural

    workers'

    (F)

    Lexical tems

    n religious

    and

    sanitary

    ontexts:

    (9) A misavou candohai enrffe]rros'I

    go

    to mass

    when

    there s

    a

    funeral'

    (10)

    Sacdronme

    tratamffe]nto

    porque

    decfan

    que

    xa

    estaba

    en

    'They

    took me

    off

    the

    treatment

    because

    hey

    said

    that I

    was

    no

    longer

    ill '

    6 .2.

    Discussion

    of the

    data

    There

    are

    several points

    in Lorenzo's thesis and in our

    interpretation

    of it.

    These

    are mainly:

    (I)

    The

    altemance

    s

    a matter

    of

    phonological

    variation,

    not

    just

    of lexical

    borrowing.

    (II)

    This phonological

    variation

    has its

    source

    n

    interference

    phenomena

    -

    originally

    loanwords.

    (III)

    This phonological

    variation

    s

    of

    a socio-symbolic

    ature,

    n

    the

    sense

    that it

    conveys

    socialmeaning.

    (IV)

    This

    socio-symbolic

    phonological

    variat ion,

    originated

    in

    contact

    phenomena,

    an be

    best described

    as

    pragmatic

    n nature.

    Point

    (II)

    --or

    at least

    ts predicate

    hrase--

    would

    be accepted

    y

    anyone. Point

    (III)

    is

    the marrow

    of Lorenzo's

    contention

    and

    the

    goai

    of his

    argument.

    Point

    (I)

    is in part

    argued

    by him

    and will

    be reinforced

    by

    us

    below

    in

    the

    light

    of

    some acts.

    Point

    (IV)

    must

    be our

    main

    contention

    ere.

    Concerning

    point

    (I),

    there

    are

    several

    kinds

    of facts

    that

    mav

    be

    adduced

    in

    order

    to

    argue the phonological

    character

    of

    the

    phenorn.na

    reported n (1) - (3).These nclude:

    (i)

    The fact

    that

    one may

    find

    these

    altemances

    n

    verbs,

    not

    only

    nouns.

    (ii)

    The

    existence

    n

    the verbal

    repertoire

    of the cornmunity

    of

    paradigmatic

    oppositions

    between exical

    items

    differing

    only in

    the

    use of

    one

    or the

    other

    variant

    and

    giving

    way

    to

    semantically

    pecialized

    oublets,

    ike

    in

    (G):

    (8)

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    476

    Joan A. Argente and Lluis Payatf

    (13) Estehome6 neto de Paxariflo.Este6 nieto do homemi{isvello da

    parroquia

    'This

    man is Paxariflo's

    grandson.

    He is

    the

    grandson

    of the

    oldest

    man

    on the

    parish'

    (14)

    Estabamos

    dous

    homes

    solos. coa

    m6quina

    que

    arrea vinteseis

    peixes pE

    minuto.

    e aquf estou.

    ee

    que?. qu6roche

    dicir.

    ientendes?.

    e

    m6taste

    a traballar

    pa

    o do

    puente

    de

    cl6-cl5

    a ese

    home non

    se

    lle

    paga

    nada.

    Pdgaselle

    6s

    artistas. 6 asf ou non 6? E si lle contestas lgo xa che estdndando

    o

    pase.

    xa

    te amenazan un

    p3rche.

    ientiendes?.

    ...>

    Fun

    enlace

    sindical durantecatro anos.

    que

    me nombraronno mar

    os

    marifreirosmisrEgs... non

    podes

    r

    a

    ningrin ado.

    lentiendes?

    'There

    were only

    two of us,

    with

    the

    machine

    uming out

    twenty-

    six

    fishes

    per

    minute, and

    here

    am

    I

    --and

    so

    what?

    I

    mean

    --do

    you

    understand?--

    nd

    you

    kill

    yourself

    with

    work

    for the one in

    the bridge

    off

    the back

    of

    another

    and they

    pay

    almost nothing to this man. They

    pay

    the artists,don't they? And

    if

    you

    try

    to

    argue

    with them, they

    get rid

    of

    you

    at once, they

    threaten

    you

    with

    the sack

    --do

    you

    understand?

    steward

    for

    four years

    seamen

    themselves...

    and

    you

    can't

    go

    anywhere

    --do

    you

    understand?'

    Lorenzo

    (1990)

    remarks

    that

    the diphthonged variant

    always

    appears

    n

    second

    place,

    and attributes o

    it

    an expressive

    pragmatic)

    value

    of

    emphasis,

    artially

    independent f the basic

    value

    we

    are

    discussinghere.

    (iv)

    Finally,

    perhaps

    he

    most interesting

    cases o be

    adduced

    or

    the

    sake

    of

    the

    argument

    would

    be those where the

    fact

    can

    be

    observed

    ndependently

    of

    any

    process

    of

    lexical borrowing, .e.those

    where

    he variants

    e],

    [we]

    or

    Ix]

    are used

    n

    otherwise

    Galician traditional

    words with no

    corresponding

    orms

    in Spanish,at

    the time

    that

    the original

    [E],

    [c]

    or

    [S

    1

    is kept

    and the

    purely

    phonological

    alternance

    s

    used to convey the same

    values as

    in

    the cases

    mentioned ill

    now. At

    present,

    he

    lack

    of these casesseem to

    prove

    that

    hypothesis

    I)

    must be

    taken

    in

    a

    more coloured sense: he

    process

    of

    phonologizationhas not

    yet

    finished.

    As in the case f a spontaneous

    ound hange,hen,some

    of

    these

    facts

    probably

    originated s

    exical

    phenomena,

    hat

    s

    to

    say, hey affected

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    The srudy

    of languages

    n contact

    477

    somespecific exical items

    before

    generalizing

    o the rest of the contexts

    where

    hey appearand

    before evolving towards

    a sound alternance

    -and

    so, a

    phonological

    ariable.

    What

    is

    at

    stake

    here is

    the

    nature

    of

    some

    facts

    of

    inherent

    variationn

    a

    language

    ontact setting

    where

    the

    languages

    n concurrence

    are

    highly related,

    and, as a consequence,

    hey share a

    great

    part

    of

    their

    vocabulary

    and structural

    features.

    It is

    under these

    circumstances

    hat

    original

    nterference

    phenomena

    may

    turn

    into

    socio-symbolic

    inherent

    variation.

    Center ing

    ourselves

    on th is

    socio-symbol ic value

    of

    the

    altemancesonsidered,

    e

    describe

    t

    as

    properly

    pragmatic

    n nature

    -more

    thansay

    strictly sociolinguistic--, n

    so

    far

    as

    the

    variablesdo

    not

    seem

    to

    identify

    a

    style

    --either

    measured n

    termesof

    a

    scale

    of

    formality

    or

    qualified

    as

    a naturalvariety--,

    nor to correlatewith

    a

    stratified

    social

    group

    --men

    versus

    women,

    adults

    vs. children,

    older

    generation

    s.

    younger generations,

    upper

    s. middlevs. lower

    classes,

    easant

    workersvs. sea-workers

    s.

    white-

    collars, r

    any

    other--,

    nor

    even tc characterizea register tied

    to a well-

    defined ocio-cultural ituation. nstead, hey seem o mark some opics or key-

    words

    s,so to speak, n-group

    generated

    s.

    out-group

    generated,

    nd

    so, in

    some ense,

    utochthonous s.

    allochthonous

    with regard

    o the community.

    This

    interpretation

    does

    not

    follow

    mechanically from

    Lorenzo's

    data,

    or

    the

    group

    he investigateds

    a relatively

    homogeneous

    ne

    as to age,

    educational

    evel,

    socio-economic

    ctivities and

    position,

    ethnic

    group,

    etc.

    Anyway,everythingseems o

    point

    in

    the direction of a

    generahzed

    se of the

    phonological

    ariables n the

    community

    --even

    children make

    use

    of

    them

    (Lorenzo, ersonal ommunication).

    So,

    as

    far

    as

    Lorenzo's

    analysis

    holds

    true, and

    as far

    as our

    interpretation

    f the

    facts

    fits

    it,

    we

    are

    clearly confronted with

    a device for

    conveying

    ocial

    meaning.T

    On the other

    hand,

    a strictly correlational nalysis

    would

    provide

    us

    with

    no adequate nterpretation

    or

    the variables n

    question.

    Instead,

    nly

    an

    analysis

    rom

    the

    point

    of

    view

    of the use speakersmake

    of

    them

    n verbal nteractionand from the

    point

    of

    view of the values

    speakers

    assign

    o them

    n this

    specific

    socio-cultural ontext

    may

    put

    us on

    the

    track

    o

    7

    As

    general ly

    accepted, code-switching

    s

    another

    mechanism

    conveying

    ocial

    meaningand, n contradistinctiono interference,t is

    usually

    interpreteds

    non-automatic.For

    Galician

    -

    Spanish

    code-switching n

    the

    observedommunity,

    ee

    Argente

    and Lorenzo

    1989,

    1990).

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    478

    JoanA.

    Argente nd Lluts Payat6

    discoverwhat type of socio-symbolicmeaning s conveyedby variablesof this

    kind.

    Not

    only

    are

    we

    allowed

    to examine these

    phenomena

    rom

    a

    pragmatic

    standpoint,

    but

    this is the

    only

    analysis

    hat will turn out

    to be the

    most

    appropriate:

    n

    so

    far

    as some

    nterferences eem o

    be

    governed

    by

    the

    speakers'

    purposeful

    use,

    they should

    no longer be considered

    as automatic,

    non-monitored,

    general phenomena,

    but

    should rather be viewed

    from

    a

    perspective

    hat

    takes

    anguage

    use

    --and

    specifically

    the

    relationship

    between

    language signs and their users

    --

    as its main relevant topic of concern.This

    viewpoint

    is

    the one

    furnishedby

    pragmatics.

    Finally, the

    adaptive character

    of

    pragmatic values

    and elements

    shows up

    again.

    ndeed,

    we

    are

    entitled to consider

    nterference

    as adaptation,

    in

    so

    far as

    it

    implies variation and

    choice,

    for

    any adaptation

    consists

    n

    selecting

    a

    variable, he one

    that

    is

    the

    most suited

    o

    a

    specific

    purpose.

    We believe

    that studies

    n

    this

    line will also show

    interference

    o

    be used

    to express

    other

    pragmatically

    relevant values and

    functions in

    social

    interaction

    --either

    as

    a

    way of conveying

    social

    meaning or as a strategy

    n

    constructing

    discourse.

    A special

    case n

    point

    should

    be expressive

    alues ied

    to

    irony

    and

    humour.

    In short,

    the

    pragmatic values of

    interference

    show both

    that the

    study of

    languages

    n

    contact

    may take

    advantage

    f a

    pragmatic

    approach

    and

    that

    pragmatics

    as a

    discipline

    may benefit

    from

    the analysis

    of

    language

    contact.

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    The

    study of

    languages

    in contact

    479

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