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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton 2021

Convergence and Failure to Converge in Relative Social Isolation: Balkan Judezmo

From the book Between Separation and Symbiosis

  • Brian D. Joseph


This chapter1 on Judezmo shows how easily some features can penetrate into a language system, especially those aspects of the lexicon and morphosyntax most tied to conversation and the habits of pronunciation acquired via heavy use of the socially dominant language. The mix of Balkan features in Judezmo sharpens a sense of what it means to be peripheral within a Sprachbund. Some of the developments of Judezmo, with either sources or parallels elsewhere in Ibero-Romance, show that both timing and environment - here the Balkan chronotope - are crucial in helping to distinguish between that which is convergent and that which is parallel.

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