Loanword Histories and the Demography of Migration

Christopher Ehret

in Rethinking Anthropological Perspectives on Migration

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780813036076
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813041780 | DOI:
Loanword Histories and the Demography of Migration

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The patterns of word borrowing from one language to another over multiple generations are a neglected but especially productive resource for discovering and assessing the academic processes and the social and material cultural effects of particular eras of migration and for formulating testable predictions about the expected correlative archaeological and human genetic outcomes. This chapter models the processing and analysis of this kind of evidence by applying the relevant techniques to the succession of loanword sets generated by the encounters of speakers of the Maa-Ongamo languages with other societies, as they migrated by stages farther southward in East Africa over the past 1,500 years.

Keywords: core vocabulary; loanwords; linguistic stratigraphy; peripheral basic vocabulary; word-borrowing categories

Chapter.  7611 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Sociology

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