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Northern Aslian Linguistic Prehistory: Tracing the Effects of Contact

Yager, Joanne LU (2013) SPVR01 20122
Master's Programme: Language and Linguistics
General Linguistics
Abstract
This study focuses on the genealogical and contact-based connections among the Northern Aslian varieties, which form one of three subgroups of the Aslian subbranch of the Austroasiatic stock, spoken in Peninsular Malaysia and southern Thailand. The complex patterns of contact that exist among the speakers of the closely related Northern Aslian varieties coupled with a scarcity of data and a lack of written history give rise to difficulties in the representation of the historical relationships among these varieties using traditional models of language classification. In particular, the study focuses on the variety of Menriq spoken in the resettlement area of Sungai Rual, Kelantan, Malaysia. The lexical and phonological features of this... (More)
This study focuses on the genealogical and contact-based connections among the Northern Aslian varieties, which form one of three subgroups of the Aslian subbranch of the Austroasiatic stock, spoken in Peninsular Malaysia and southern Thailand. The complex patterns of contact that exist among the speakers of the closely related Northern Aslian varieties coupled with a scarcity of data and a lack of written history give rise to difficulties in the representation of the historical relationships among these varieties using traditional models of language classification. In particular, the study focuses on the variety of Menriq spoken in the resettlement area of Sungai Rual, Kelantan, Malaysia. The lexical and phonological features of this hitherto undescribed variety as well as its unexpected geographical location suggest a complex and ambiguous history. Analysis of the phonological and lexical aspects of this variety using a range of different methods suggests that its speakers may have undergone periods of both isolation from and intense contact with speakers of the other Northern Aslian varieties of the study. Furthermore, a large degree of contact among the majority of the Northern Aslian varieties is evident in the analyses, and patterns suggest the past existence of a dialect continuum stretching from central Peninsular Malaysia into southern Thailand. More recently, it would appear that this continuum has been split in two by the arrival of Jahai-speaking groups in the midst of the formerly contiguous Menriq- and Kensiw/Kintaq-speaking groups, resulting in lower levels of contact involving the varieties spoken to the north of this split. The findings suggest the importance of further study of the Menriq Rual variety and of the genealogical and contact-based patterns among the Northern Aslian varieties, as well as the urgency of documentation endeavours in this part of the world. (Less)
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author
Yager, Joanne LU
supervisor
organization
course
SPVR01 20122
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Aslian languages, language classification, linguistic contact, phylogenetic networks, Neighbor-Net, basic vocabulary, Menriq Rual
language
English
id
3469448
date added to LUP
2013-02-15 10:01:11
date last changed
2013-02-15 10:01:11
@misc{3469448,
  abstract     = {This study focuses on the genealogical and contact-based connections among the Northern Aslian varieties, which form one of three subgroups of the Aslian subbranch of the Austroasiatic stock, spoken in Peninsular Malaysia and southern Thailand. The complex patterns of contact that exist among the speakers of the closely related Northern Aslian varieties coupled with a scarcity of data and a lack of written history give rise to difficulties in the representation of the historical relationships among these varieties using traditional models of language classification. In particular, the study focuses on the variety of Menriq spoken in the resettlement area of Sungai Rual, Kelantan, Malaysia. The lexical and phonological features of this hitherto undescribed variety as well as its unexpected geographical location suggest a complex and ambiguous history. Analysis of the phonological and lexical aspects of this variety using a range of different methods suggests that its speakers may have undergone periods of both isolation from and intense contact with speakers of the other Northern Aslian varieties of the study. Furthermore, a large degree of contact among the majority of the Northern Aslian varieties is evident in the analyses, and patterns suggest the past existence of a dialect continuum stretching from central Peninsular Malaysia into southern Thailand. More recently, it would appear that this continuum has been split in two by the arrival of Jahai-speaking groups in the midst of the formerly contiguous Menriq- and Kensiw/Kintaq-speaking groups, resulting in lower levels of contact involving the varieties spoken to the north of this split. The findings suggest the importance of further study of the Menriq Rual variety and of the genealogical and contact-based patterns among the Northern Aslian varieties, as well as the urgency of documentation endeavours in this part of the world.},
  author       = {Yager, Joanne},
  keyword      = {Aslian languages,language classification,linguistic contact,phylogenetic networks,Neighbor-Net,basic vocabulary,Menriq Rual},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Northern Aslian Linguistic Prehistory: Tracing the Effects of Contact},
  year         = {2013},
}