There is no other field such as that of postcolonial literature in which creative writing acts as a fundamental device to dismantle the central Imperialnorm. Among the huge post-colonial production, Caribbean literature can be considered an outstanding example of how language contact can result in highly imaginative changes in language structure. The new english resulting from such a contact, widely shifting from the acrolect to the basilect, unfolds the starring role of linguistic transformation – by means of neologisms, innovations, semantic distortions etc. – in the constant process of re-affirming identity, a process that shows ‘the ironic inability of the English language to ward off [the linguistic]invasion by those whom they invaded (Ashcroft, 2009:9)’. English is my father tongue. A father tongue is a foreign language, therefore English is a foreign language not a mother tongue. What is my mother tongue my mummy tongue my mammy tongue my momsy tongue my modder tongue my ma tongue? (Philip, 1988:30) The extract is taken from Discourse on the Logic of Language, an emblematic chapter of the book chosen for analysis, which perfectly suits the purpose of this work, that is to show how the linguistic changes in the writer’s Mother tongue, Tobagonian Creole English, code-switched with and embedded in the Father tongue, the colonizer’s standard English, are used to shape the search for identity, rebellion, the deafening silence of black people forced to slavery, the inhuman treatments and the sexual violence to which black women were subjected.

Resignifying Standard English: Marlene NourbeSe Philip’s She tries her tongue her silence softly breaks

MASONE, ROBERTO
2015

Abstract

There is no other field such as that of postcolonial literature in which creative writing acts as a fundamental device to dismantle the central Imperialnorm. Among the huge post-colonial production, Caribbean literature can be considered an outstanding example of how language contact can result in highly imaginative changes in language structure. The new english resulting from such a contact, widely shifting from the acrolect to the basilect, unfolds the starring role of linguistic transformation – by means of neologisms, innovations, semantic distortions etc. – in the constant process of re-affirming identity, a process that shows ‘the ironic inability of the English language to ward off [the linguistic]invasion by those whom they invaded (Ashcroft, 2009:9)’. English is my father tongue. A father tongue is a foreign language, therefore English is a foreign language not a mother tongue. What is my mother tongue my mummy tongue my mammy tongue my momsy tongue my modder tongue my ma tongue? (Philip, 1988:30) The extract is taken from Discourse on the Logic of Language, an emblematic chapter of the book chosen for analysis, which perfectly suits the purpose of this work, that is to show how the linguistic changes in the writer’s Mother tongue, Tobagonian Creole English, code-switched with and embedded in the Father tongue, the colonizer’s standard English, are used to shape the search for identity, rebellion, the deafening silence of black people forced to slavery, the inhuman treatments and the sexual violence to which black women were subjected.
1-4438-7611-9
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11386/4611657
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