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13 - Standard English in Trinidad: Multinormativity, Translocality, and Implications for the Dynamic Model and the EIF Model

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 September 2020

Sarah Buschfeld
Affiliation:
TU Dortmund University
Alexander Kautzsch
Affiliation:
University of Regensburg
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Summary

INTRODUCTION

This chapter aims at testing and applying the Dynamic Model (Schneider 2007) and the recently introduced Extra- and Intra-territorial Forces (EIF) Model (Buschfeld and Kautzsch 2017; Buschfeld et al. 2018) to the Caribbean island of Trinidad. With a focus on Standard English (as opposed to Trinidadian English Creole [TEC]), the findings of a largescale attitude study conducted in the Trinidadian education context are combined with discussions of World Englishes models; empirical investigations in which these models were explicitly put to test were also taken into account.

This study provides an instructive case for World Englishes theorizing and model making for a number of reasons: first, given the complexity and dynamics of English in Trinidad and the wider anglophone Caribbean, Trinidadian English (TrinE) may serve as a potential example of a less prototypical postcolonial variety of English whose developments the EIF Model explicitly claims to account for as well (Buschfeld and Kautzsch 2017: 121). That is, placing English(es) in the Caribbean within categories and models of World Englishes has always been somewhat challenging. Traditional notions of English as a Native (ENL), English as a Second (ESL), or English as a Foreign Language (EFL) do not apply to the multivarietal speech communities of the English-speaking Caribbean where emerging Englishes coexist with English-based creoles along a continuum of sociolinguistic variation (Deuber 2014: 11) and the use of English, its functions, and social meanings are context-dependent and variable (Westphal 2017: 204). Second, the study allows for discussions of processes of norm ( re-)orientation and standardization in small postcolonial speech communities where different local, regional, and global forces and norms interact (e.g. Mair 2013: 258; Hackert 2016: 106) and where linguistic emancipation processes have been shown to manifest in complex and diverse ways that may go beyond the traditional developmental path often anticipated in World Englishes models (Hundt et al. 2015; Mair 2017: 8; Westphal 2017: 224). Third, language attitudes and ideologies are fundamentally important for examining standardization processes (Schreier 2012: 357), investigating variety status, situating emerging varieties within models of World Englishes (Hundt et al. 2015: 705; Buschfeld and Schneider 2018: 41), and, therefore, also for testing such models.

Type
Chapter
Information
Modelling World Englishes
A Joint Approach to Postcolonial and Non-Postcolonial Varieties
, pp. 274 - 297
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Print publication year: 2020

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