A brand new language has been quickly spreading, as noticed by linguist Nicholas Grenoble. The inflow of English has been noticeable, with latest immigrants and momentary staff primarily utilizing the language. Moreover, younger individuals are studying English by way of numerous mediums similar to films, video video games, social media, and YouTube. Grenoble’s analysis goals to grasp the dynamics of this example each linguistically and sociolinguistically. Particularly, he needs to know who speaks which language, when, and with whom. He’s additionally all for how Greenlanders are studying English and the way it impacts their data and use of their mom tongue, Kalaallisut.
To collect data and reply these questions, Grenoble and challenge postdoc Jessica Kantarovich carried out observations in Nuuk, Greenland. One specific space of curiosity for them was the experiences of Kalaallisut getting shorter. Kalaallisut is a polysynthetic language, the place suffixes tackle the function of phrases in languages like English. Grenoble offers an instance, explaining that the phrase “qujanaq” means “thanks.” By including the suffix “-rsuaq,” that means “massive,” the phrase turns into “qujanarsuaq,” which interprets to “massive thanks” or “thanks very a lot.” The researchers carried out interviews in Kalaallisut to find out if and the way phrases had been getting shorter. Additionally they studied the on a regular basis use of the language.
Of their analysis, Grenoble and Kantarovich additionally interact in participant-observation work. They spend time in public locations, similar to shops and eating places, to look at the language utilization. They take note of who’s utilizing which language in informal and transient interactions. One specific focus for the students is the idea of shifting audio system, which refers to younger folks of their homeland who cease studying their mother and father’ minority language and shift to the bulk language. This phenomenon is of nice curiosity to Grenoble and his workforce.