Title: Irish English in a time-capsule: Irish emigrant voices in speech and writing
Guest speaker: Carolina Amador-Moreno
Date: 3 May 2021, 14.00 (Western European Time Zone)
Link – https://videoconf-colibri.zoom.us/j/83937099303
Organisation: ULICES Research Groups 4 & 5 and RHOME – Representations of Home project
The legacy of Irish English (also known as Hiberno-English) in places such as Newfoundland, Australia, the United States and the Caribbean has been dealt with in various studies since the ‘80s. Some scholars have focused on the role of British dialects in both the genesis and subsequent history of postcolonial Englishes. However, an important omission in the context of the study of this variety so far has been the Latin-American scene.
During the nineteenth century, between 40,000 and 45,000 persons born in Ireland emigrated to Argentina. Most of them settled in the Argentine pampas and worked primarily as shepherds and sheep-farmers. They started families and became the largest Irish community in the Spanish-speaking world. Their descendants’ use of English still displays Irish English features.
This talk will analyse the survival of Irish English in oral narratives and written documents produced by the Irish-Argentines. It will examine phonological, syntactic and lexical features of Irish English in a set of documents produced by Radio Telefís Éireann between 1987 and 1997 and it will also pay attention to the orality contained in some of the language used in letter-writing. The talk will reflect upon the transportation and preservation of dialectal features through generations of Irish English speakers whose contact with Ireland was, in many cases, non-existant. Through the narratives of the Irish-Argentines, we will explore the linguistic consequences of emigration and language contact in a Spanish speaking context.
Carolina P. Amador-Moreno is Associate Professor of English Linguistics at the University of Bergen. She has held different teaching positions at the University of Extremadura (Department of English), the University of Limerick (Department of Languages and Cultural Studies), and University College Dublin (English Department, where she was appointed lecturer in Hiberno-English). Her research interests centre on the English spoken in Ireland and include historical linguistics, stylistics, discourse analysis, corpus linguistics, sociolinguistics, and pragmatics. Her publications include articles and chapters dealing with these topics. She is the author, among others, of Orality in written texts: Using historical corpora to investigate Irish English (1700-1900), Routledge (2019); An Introduction to Irish English, Equinox (2010); the co-edited volumes Irish Identities: Sociolinguistic Perspectives -Mouton de Gruyter (2020); Voice and Discourse in the Irish Context –Palgrave-Macmillan (2017); Pragmatic Markers in Irish English (2015) -John Benjamins; and Fictionalising Orality, a special issue of the journal Sociolinguistic Studies (2011). Until August 2020 she was Director of the Research Institute for Linguistics and Applied Languages (LINGLAP) at the University of Extremadura.