Tok Pisin on the Internet

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dc.contributor.advisor MacKay, Carolyn J. (Carolyn Joyce), 1954- en_US Harvey, Jana R. en_US
dc.coverage.spatial a-pp--- en_US 2011-06-03T19:26:28Z 2011-06-03T19:26:28Z 2007 en_US 2007
dc.identifier LD2489.Z68 2007 .H37 en_US
dc.description.abstract Internet message boards are a medium by which educated Papua New Guineans who are living outside of Papua New Guinea (PNG) maintain ties to one another and to their home country. One of the languages that they use on these message boards is Tok Pisin (TP), an English-based creole spoken in PNG that has changed rapidly in theapproximately 120 years since its creation as a pidgin.Romaine (1992) suggests that decreolization by means of new changes toward English is occurring in the TP language. Smith (2002) disagrees and claims that there is no evidence for decreolization. This study shows that there is evidence in favor of decreolization, in particular a Matrix Language (ML) turnover (Myers-Scotton 2002), in the TP used on seven Internet message boards. This conclusion is also derived through the study of 139 letters to the editor in the TP weekly newspaper Wantok written during 2003 and 2006.In looking for English `late system morphemes,' whose existence in bilingual complementizer phrases that have TP as the ML would indicate the beginning of a ML turnover (Myers-Scotton 2002), this study counts deletion of the TP particle i as a late system morpheme.Results show that on Internet message boards, the particle i only marks the predicate in 33% of the locations where it would occur in Standard TP. In Wantok letters to the editor, i occurs 95% of the time. Internet users are more likely to be influenced by English and have less access to Standard TP. Although TP is still valued by highly educated Papua New Guineans in the English domain of the Internet to discuss personal topics and show solidarity with one another, it is not their first choice of language, and the loss of the particle i shows evidence for a ML turnover having begun in the language. One conclusion that may be drawn from this study is that planning for the future of TP by the leaders of PNG is essential to maintain TP as a community language. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Department of English
dc.format.extent ix, 170 leaves : ill., maps ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.language.iso eng tpi en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Tok Pisin language. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Language and the Internet -- Papua New Guinea. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Languages, Mixed. en_US
dc.title Tok Pisin on the Internet en_US Thesis (Ph. D.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3248]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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