Talk:Mixed language

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Comment[edit]

Please provide a published source backing up the claim that Galatian is a mixed language. --Angr/tɔk tə mi 18:28, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

Why is this article, which is supposed to be about mixed languages, mostly not about mixed languages? I think the irrelevant stuff should be removed. Dougg 08:32, 16 August 2005 (UTC)

Largely because there's so little research done on genuine mixed languages (which are extremely rare) and so much misuse of the term "mixed language" to mean "any form of a language that has been influenced in any way by another language". If you want to improve the article, however, feel free! --Angr/tɔk tə mi 04:05, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

Ukrainian/Russian - mixed-language or code-switching?[edit]

So, what about the western Ukraine where people are fluent in both Ukrainain and Russian and most speak a mixture of both languages - even in the same sentence? Often people will use the pronouns and pronounciation of one language while heavily borrowing words from the other language. While the grammar is very similar, I've heard that only about 30% of the vocabulary is shared. So, is this area using code-switching or is Ukrussian a mixed-language?

Maltese[edit]

Calling Maltese a mixed language shows a profound misunderstanding of both Maltese and the concept of "mixed language". Maltese is a Semitic language, specifically it's a variety of Arabic. It has a lot of loanwords from Italian and English, but its core vocabulary and all of its grammar is Arabic. It's no more a mixed language than English is (and no, English isn't one either). —Angr 17:44, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

I looked through the sources given. The two offline sources (which I don't have access to) are 50 years old and so hardly reflect up-to-date research. Many of the online sources don't actually claim that Maltese is a mixed language, so I removed them. One freely admits to inventing a new definition of "mixed language", which includes Urdu, Ottomon Turkish, and Yiddish, none of which are considered mixed languages by the conventional definition; I removed that too since this article follows the conventional definition. The remaining online sources that do make the claim are not written by linguists. So maybe 50 years ago some linguists considered Maltese a mixed language, but it seems that today, only non-linguists do. —Angr 18:13, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

As mentioned in my edit summary, you are not in a position to decide which reliable sources are more credible than others. All the sources listed claim Maltese is a mixed language.
And the reason Maltese is considered a mixed language is because it has both Semitic and Romance syntax patterns used coincidingly. You would be correct in saying that Maltese is classifiable as a Semitic language - because some do consider it so, but since wikipedia represents a neutral viewpoint, the fact that many linguists consider it a mixed language must also be represented too. This is your last time, before you break a 3-revert rule. You are evidently wrong, so I hope for your own reputation and credibility, you walk away with at least some of your pride intact - but the way you are going, you are simply stumbling over yourself splurting out complete rubbish in an attempt to remove all the sources. 89.242.104.114 (talk) 18:29, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, you're just wrong. As a linguist, I am certainly in a position to distinguish between reliable and non-reliable sources, and I am definitely in a position to see what sources do not say what you claim they do. At this source you added, the term "mixed language" appears only in a section specifically denying that Maltese is one. This source never calls Maltese a mixed language. This source uses the term "mixed language" but defines it as a language in which morphology and syntax are mixed--that is not the conventional definition of mixed language, nor the one used on this page. This source freely admits it's making up its own definition of "mixed language" since they want to be able to call Urdu one. None of the online source mentions Sicanian, Sicilian Arabic, or French; maybe the offline ones do. Of the remaining online sources, none are written by linguists: three are written by computer scientists, and one is a popular encyclopedia. Of course I don't OWN this article, but as a Wikipedia editor it is my responsibility to keep ignorant misinformation out of it. —Angr 19:21, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
Er, quite simply, no, I'm not "just wrong" thank you very much. This source, if you cared to read it, describes Maltese as "Semi-Romance", which I am sure that using a few braincells, you might be able to figure out how this should be interpreted. As an undoubtedly higher qualified linguist than yourself, and having stuided the language in depth for several years, I do not respect being spoken to in such an impertinent manner. There are a whole multitude of sources there, and if you are honestly suggesting that they are all invalid, I feel I have no other option than to request Mediation, not just for Comment. 89.242.104.114 (talk) 19:56, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
Looking over Maltese language I see it provides no surprises – Italian and English loanwords, but thoroughly Arabic inflectional morphology, except for loanwords taking their native plurals, as they often do in English and other languages; nowhere near enough for the label "mixed language" to apply. Now, if Maltese were Arabic in its noun morphology but Italian in its verb morphology, or Arabic in its derivational morphology and Italian in its inflectional morphology, we might be getting somewhere. But as it is, the article provides no evidence to suggest the non-linguists calling Maltese a "mixed language" actually understand what the term means. You are definitely "just wrong" if you think an article saying "A first attempt of analysis of Maltese within the framework of Creole studies was put forward by Stolz (2003); according to him, Maltese – as well as Chamorro – doesn’t belong neither to the category of ‘mixed languages’ nor it may be interpreted as an example of ‘massive borrowing’ (cfr. Bakker/Mous, 1994)" supports your claim of Maltese as a mixed language. The Concise Oxford Companion to the English Language indeed says "semi-Romance", but it doesn't say "mixed language", and since it also calls Albanian and English "semi-Romance", that term clearly does not imply a mixed language, since neither Albanian nor English are mixed languages, either. If there are a whole host of sources written by qualified linguists (not computer scientists, not journalists, not general-interest encyclopedia writers) in, say, the past 20 years or so, why aren't you citing them instead of the ones you have cited so far? As for our qualifications as linguists, it is the nature of Wikipedia that neither of us can prove them, so we'll have to do without dueling Ph.D. dissertations. —Angr 20:15, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── (On a sidenote, oh how I wish you would look at the Style manual - your formattings are simply annoying). And it is apparent you did not read the Maltese language article properly. It clearly states that both Semitic and Romance syntax patterns co-correlate. For instance, the idea of the trilateral consonant function of Arabic, by which the base root of a word stems from three selected consonants, with all derivatives created by rearranging them and interposting vowels, while coexisting with a Romance syntax pattern (which I am sure if you are the qualified linguist you say you are, will know is certainly different from that of the Arabic) certainly makes it Mixed. And no actually, I included this source because if you noticed, I wrote in the section about how Maltese was only classified as a Mixed language by some linguists, while others still considered it historically Semitic. Point out to me where I stated otherwise, by all means. And *cough* yes? Usually, the idea that a language is Semi-Romance, Semi-Semitic would tend to suggest a mix, but you know, I guess you must be so highly linguistically qualified with all that logic there ey? ;) And the other quotes are all reliable third party sources, and thus pass the test of reliability. 89.242.104.114 (talk) 20:31, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

The Maltese article claims that the language has both Maltese and Romance syntax patterns, but it's only said that since you added it today (without sources to back you up). Before today, it only mentioned Romance vocabulary, including native pluralization and the inflection of borrowed Romance verbs by means of Arabic affixes. So what is the Romance syntax pattern? There's nothing in the article but an unsupported claim with no examples that you yourself added a few hours ago. As for the Uni Bremen quote, perhaps you intended to say that Maltese is only classified as mixed by some people, but all you did say was "Maltese is considered by many linguists to be a mixture of Romance and Semitic syntax, grammar, and vocabulary, with influences from Sicanian, Sicilian Arabic, Italian, Sicilian Italian, French, and English", without any indication of an opposing point of view. And yet you included the source that says the precise opposite. Finally, your interpretation of what Oxford meant by "semi-Romance" amounts to original research: they didn't say "mixed language", they give other examples that are clearly not mixed languages, so you cannot claim that source backs up your claim that Maltese is one. Simply "having a mix" is not sufficient to be a mixed language: code-switching, substrate effects, heavy lexical borrowing, and pidginization all involve "having a mix", but that doesn't make their results mixed languages according to the definition given here. Since English and Albanian are examples of languages that have heavy borrowing from Romance, but do not meet the definition of "mixed language", I can only conclude that when Oxford says "semi-Romance" what they mean is "having a large number of Romance loanwords", which isn't the same thing. —Angr 21:00, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
"The Maltese article claims that the language has both Maltese and Romance syntax patterns, but it's only said that since you added it today (without sources to back you up)."
Oh really? Well if that is the case, then why did this paragraph exist, without me adding/editing it:
Verbs still show a triliteral Semitic pattern, in which a verb is conjugated with prefixes, suffixes, and infixes (for example ktibna, Arabic katabna, Hebrew katavnu "we wrote"). There are two tenses: present and perfect. The Maltese verb system incorporates Romance verbs and adds Arabic suffixes and prefixes to them (for example iddeċidejna "we decided" < (i)ddeċieda 'Romance verb' + -ejna, an Arabic first person plural perfect marker).
Tut tut, try again. 89.242.104.114 (talk) 21:06, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
That says exactly what I said it says: Romance verbs take Arabic suffixes and prefixes. Maltese iddeċidejna with its Romance root and Arabic affix is identical in structure to English decided, which has a Romance root (decid-) and a Germanic affix (-ed). This is morphology, not syntax, and utterly uninteresting morphology at that, since there's nothing unusual or "mixed-language-like" about inflecting loanwords by means of native affixes. BTW, I've reported you at WP:AN/3RR. —Angr 21:26, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

Our insecure Maltese socks are back. Protected the article. kwami (talk) 08:42, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

No, I'm not a "sock", but Maltese certainly sprang to mind as an example. Were it not for the extremely heavy Italian and Greek influence on vocabulary and transcription, it would be more or less Arabic.--MacRusgail (talk) 16:36, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

English has been seriously modified by French as well.

English as a creole language[edit]

Taking into account that for centuries French was the language used by the English Norman elite (Plantagenet) it is evident English is now a creole language with an importante percentage of Latin words: Liberty in Latin/Freeom in Germanic, for example. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 81.36.210.54 (talk) 06:02, 22 October 2008 (UTC)

English has a lot of French loanwords, but it is neither a mixed language nor a creole, as both of those terms describe languages where the admixture of languages goes much deeper than mere vocabulary. —Angr 06:07, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
IN the case of English, this is exactly what happened. The grammar, especially in the formation of plurals (ending in -s), is heavily influenced by French. It's not just vocabulary.--MacRusgail (talk) 16:38, 1 May 2010 (UTC)
The plural in -s is inherited from Old English, as is the rest of English grammar. +Angr 16:45, 1 May 2010 (UTC)
No, it's not. It's pure French. Old English plurals were usually in -en like German, e.g. men or children, or by vowel changes, e.g. geese, , feet or by a mixture of the two, e.g. kine etc. In modern German there are some plurals in -s, but these are nearly all loanwords, e.g. "kids" and so on. Old Norse and the Scandinavian languages don't have traditional plurals in -s either.
I suggest you go and buy a copy of Sweet's Anglo-Saxon Primer.--MacRusgail (talk) 00:15, 2 May 2010 (UTC)
If you have that in front of you, you'll see that MoE plural -es ~ -s is a direct continuation of OE masc. plural -as via MdE -es. No French there. — kwami (talk) 07:16, 2 May 2010 (UTC)
Exactly. I don't have Sweet, but I have other Old English grammars (as well as 2 semesters of Old English at university), and a Wikipedia article on Old English declension. The nominative/accusative plural of strong masculine o-stems in Old English is -as, as in englas "angels", dagas "days", endas "ends", mēaras "horses", dōmas "judgments", helmas "helmets", hringas "rings", wulfas "wolves", earmas "arms", mūðas "mouths", etc. etc. Even in Modern German, -s plurals aren't all loanwords (Uhus, Staus), and in Dutch, -s is the usual plural suffix for nouns ending in an unstressed syllable (eikels, bezems, havens, akkers, meisjes, kindjes). +Angr 20:47, 2 May 2010 (UTC)
There is some rather marginal discussion of English as a creole, but they're talking about a Saxon-Danish creole forming Old English, not an English-French creole forming Middle English. AFAIK no-one considers that creolization. kwami (talk) 08:18, 22 October 2008 (UTC)

-s is the most common plural in French by far. It isn't common at all in Old English. The reason we form nearly all plurals in -s now is absolutely nothing to do with Anglo-Saxon and everything to do with the Normans. Hence mixed language.

Dutch is not a good example, because it too has been heavily influenced by French.--MacRusgail (talk) 00:03, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

I'm sorry, that's simply not what any historical linguist believes. The -as ending is very common in Old English, and it's the one that became productive. Maybe the fact that the French plural ending is also -s helped it oust -en (its only serious competitor) as the productive ending, but that's unprovable, and it's not really necessary. The ending was common enough already to become the productive ending even without French influence. +Angr 05:49, 3 May 2010 (UTC)
In any case, even if it were a French influence, it would've been just that, an influence, with French-like parts of existing English grammar being strengthened. That's nowhere near enough to call it a mixed language. — kwami (talk) 07:18, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Modern Hebrew[edit]

> However, the chief European influence on Hebrew is in pronunciation, as Hebrew grammar remains entirely Semitic.

Non-sense. The syntax of Modern Hebrew is "Standard Average European". See for example http://groups.google.com/group/sci.lang/msg/0b248d627d7379fd Why do ignorant laypeople pontificate on technical linguistic matters in Wikipedia? Well, I for one don't trust Wikipedia one iota on linguistic matters. 91.152.249.195 (talk) 18:02, 26 April 2010 (UTC)

Now think very hard about why Wikipedia does't take blogs and forum posts as solid evidence; you might then want to go an re-think the sources you trust and do a bit more reading on modern Hebrew before you come up with such sweeping statements. Akerbeltz (talk) 18:13, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
Peter T. Daniels isn't just some dude on the Internet, though; he is a respected linguist. But if the syntax of Hebrew has been Standard Average European all the way back to Mishnaic Hebrew, then whatever "Standard Average European" syntax means, it must include Semitic syntax. On the other hand, the "grammar" referred to in the sentence quoted above probably refers more to morphology than to syntax. +Angr 21:31, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
Presumably he meant this thing Standard Average European. Akerbeltz (talk) 21:38, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
(looking up Mishnah) – By that time, wouldn't most Jews be speaking Greek? —Tamfang (talk) 01:51, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Different point. The main article on Hebrew Modern_Hebrew#Classification says these Mixed/Creole classifications are seen as anything but mainstream; I therefore propose we move Hebrew off the list. Akerbeltz (talk) 17:58, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Chiac, a mixed language? Really?[edit]

Under "See also", a link to Chiac has been added. From the examples given in the French Wikipedia, this seems to be a register of French with a lot of English loanwords, loan meanings and loan constructions, as well as loaned phrases, but it's still clearly recognisable as derived from French, not even what I'd call regularised code-switching. The use of English lexical material, while unusually extensive, is hardly so extreme as to warrant doubt as to the genetic classification of the language. The verbal morphology is clearly French and there is plenty of French lexical material. I fail to see where what happens in Chiac constitutes a mixed language. I'll remove the link and change the classification of Chiac in its infobox to reflect its unambiguous French nature. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 19:46, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

That said, Chiac looks very much like the type of language that arises in a bilingual environment, especially where a small immigrant (or autochthonous minority) community is surrounded by speakers of a major language, which is also the lingua franca or native language of the wider community (usually country), necessary for anything beyond the borders of the immigrant community. This is a sort of language island situation. Just have a look at Texas German. In such cases, the immigrant community is normally fully bilingual and even if children raised in the community have learned the immigrant language first, the national language is so widely used that it may be dominant in the speakers when they use it more frequently than their first language, and may not use their first language regularly. In such cases, the second language may strongly influence the first language on all levels, not only material (typical of superstrate interference) but also structure (typical of substrate influence). This is anything but an unusual phenomenon! And it's not even a modern phenomenon, either. It's just that minority languages were rarely recorded in ancient times, but we do have a few glimpses of ancient languages like this, such as Gaulish with strong Latin influence. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 20:22, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Proposals[edit]

Time for a revisit after more than 2 years. I see some blunders corrected but others persist, and new ones added. This article isn't consistent with itself.

The fusion of more than two languages is not attested.

and so on

few languages are "mixed languages" in the specific sense here.
Most portmanteau language names, such as Franglais and Anglo-Romani, are not mixed languages

Is there even one example that is?

English developed from such a situation, incorporating many Norman borrowings into Anglo-Saxon, but it is not considered a mixed language.

This passage seems to suggest that there is something wrong with the standard technical definition "mixed language".

Cappadocian Greek, comprising mostly Greek root words, but with many Turkish grammatical endings and Turkish vowel harmony, and no gender.

Relexification. I'm really at odds here why relexification (of a massive scale) should be interpreted as "mixed language"?!?

Media Lengua, an inherited Quechua grammar and phonology with a borrowed Spanish lexicon (see relexification).

Relexification.

Erromintxela, which derives most of its lexicon from Kalderash Romani but uses Basque grammar and syntax.

Relexification.

Bonin Mixed Language, of the Bonin Islands, a mixture of American English and Japanese with additional Polynesian and Melanesian influences.

The fusion of more than two languages is not attested.

Surzhyk, a mixture of Ukrainian and Russian spoken in Ukraine, especially the Central area.

Even the wiki article doesn't describe it as a mixed language. Laypeople on the discussion page pontificate on the issue.

Revived Cornish, which often uses Breton and Welsh as sources of vocabulary and guides to pronunciation and grammar.

OMG! We are accepting some people's invented language pet projects now!

Yeniche (a mixture of German, Yiddish, and Romani).

The fusion of more than two languages is not attested. Besides, the "language" is really a) German with loanwords b) not a native language to anyone nowadays or c) "secret language" (a bit like pig latin) 85.131.18.14 (talk) 00:29, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

It's not our job to judge which languages are mixed and which are not. If reliable sources on the specific topic, such as Thomason and Kaufman, describe Cappadocian Greek as a mixed language in the narrow, technical sense, we should reflect that. I agree that most of the examples are dubious, especially those in the list of possible mixed languages, but that's why they are only listed as possible examples.
That said, however, the distinction between "normal" languages with a single ancestor but massive lexical influence from other languages, relexified languages, mixed languages, pidgin and creole languages is not at all clear to me. It seems all like a matter of degree, with no clear-cut boundaries and many in-between cases, shades of grey. How much does a language have to borrow, and in which domain, to qualify as mixed or a pidgin/creole? What if we don't know the history of the language, or at least of the speakers or precise social context or situation in which the language developped? What if the history is known, but falls in between the prototypical cases and situations? Contact linguistics has a lot to answer for, and some linguists has even started to doubt whether the notion of creole language is really useful. Elena Skribnik has similarly wondered if the reason that Mednyj Aleut is considered a mixed language rather than a creole may simply be connected with the synthetic morphology of both languages and thus merely typological (to uphold the idea that pidgins/creoles are always morphologically simplified), even though the situation in which Mednyj Aleut arose is quite similar to that of creole languages. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 18:18, 6 November 2012 (UTC)
It should still be pointed out in the article that not all researchers adopt a definition of "mixed language" that is so wide as to include cases of heavy borrowing, like Asia Minor Greek. For instance, Bakker, in A Language of Our Own: The Genesis of Michif (1997) explicitly excludes cases like Asia Minor Greek from his definition of "mixed language" (p.195. "borrowing languages still belong to one language family. They did not become mixed languages. Asia Minor Greek is basically Greek, Kormakiti Arabic is basically Arabic, and so on"). On the other hand, Croft, in Matras et al. (ed.), The Mixed Language Debate, explicitly includes them, as do, of course, Thomason & Kaufman. Fut.Perf. 07:32, 23 September 2013 (UTC)

Fall 2013 Linguistics 150 Wikipedia Project Comments/Feedback[edit]

GvargasLing150 (talk) 05:56, 6 November 2013 (UTC)Several students enrolled in a Sociolinguistics class at University of California, Berkeley, will be making some major edits to this page for the coming weeks. We hope to expand on several sections and re-work the definition of a mixed language, including how they differ from pidgins, creoles, and code-switching. We would appreciate any constructive feedback!

OK. Just remember to cite published, peer-reviewed sources. Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:44, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

I think this page could be improved by using language that is a bit more formal. Sentences like "Every language is mixed to some extent[1] but few languages are "mixed languages" in the specific sense meant here" and "The Metis of St. Laurent, a tribe of indigenous people in Canada, were made to feel their language was a sign of inferiority" seem a bit casual. Also, a lot of the sentences have many clauses that make the page feel disjointed and the ideas get lost. (Ex: Finally, a mixed language differs from code-switching, such as Spanglish or Portuñol, in that, once it has developed, the fusion of the source languages is fixed in the grammar and vocabulary, and speakers do not need to know the source languages in order to speak it.) The lone example under Sociolinguistic Aspects seems a bit strange (why does only that example demonstrate Socioling Aspects?). You need an explanation of how this example demonstrates certain sociolinguistic aspects, and even define what you mean by sociolinguistic aspects. That said, I like the examples under Cases and thought they were interesting! Yaylinguistics (talk) 09:49, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

Really interesting page! I would suggest changing the heading for the Definitions section, as it seems to be more of a compare and contrast section (which is valuable) rather than a list of definitions concerning mixed languages. The "Sociolinguistics Aspects" section seems a bit odd to me as well. Perhaps it is too descriptive and does not include enough analysis as to what exactly is sociolinguistic about the Michif case. It is also a bit awkward to have "Michif" again as a subsection in "Cases of Mixed Languages" right under where it originally appeared in "Sociolinguistic Aspects." Maybe find a way to converge them? Nice job overall! EmmaKylie (talk) 19:30, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

I think the topic of the this page is really sociolinguistically meaningful. All languages deserve to be distinguished and appreciated for the sake of their own culture. The group has clearly differentiated mixed languages from other similar types of language mix. However, I would suggest changing the title for the 'definitions' section, since the section is mainly composed of various comparisons instead of formal definitions. Also, it would be nice to include some examples of how each mixed language differ from the parent languages in expressing the same idea. Examples could be more straightforward than stating grammatical rules in prose in demonstrating the differences. Other than that, I think this page is quite organized and easy to follow. Danleiseveny (talk) 04:51, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

  • Really great page! I appreciated how easy it was to understand and follow. I liked the simplistic language that was used, but I agree that a more formal tone would be appropriate. Good job on all the hyperlinks at the beginning and the “See also” section.
  • I found it a bit strange that “Michif” was a subsection of two separate sections. I agree that you should converge them somehow. Unless you have any other examples of “sociolinguistic aspects,” perhaps you could make that a subheading under “Michif” in “Cases of mixed languages.”
  • Some examples in your “Cases of mixed languages” section use technical terms that the average non-linguist might not understand. It would be helpful to include more hyperlinks or explanations. For example, you should explain what is meant by “TAM auxiliaries” in your “Gurindji Kriol” subsection. AnnaCG93 (talk) 05:03, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

Another great page! I thought the introduction was very straightforward and easy to follow. In the definition section, I think it would be nice to have a concrete definition, either at the beginning or at the end, that synthesizes everything you guys mention that "it is not like" to show what it is. I would hyperlink 'Michif' the first time you bring the word up in the sociolinguistic aspects section. Great cases of mixed languages section! MildlyImpressed (talk) 05:49, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

  • Header/subheader names should be uncapitalized (except for the first word).
  • Good clarifications on the differences between 'mixed language' and other similar terms. As MildlyImpressed brought up, it may be helpful to also start the section with a concrete definition (that is more detailed than the one given in the intro section, of course). Perhaps you could quote a definition by an expert on mixed languages (or multiple quotes if there is conflict over the definition among different linguists).
  • I think the Michif example in the "Sociolinguistic aspects" section was interesting. You could give a more general overview/explanation of sociolinguistic aspects, though, so that the section doesn't just revolve around one example.
  • The "Cases of mixed languages" section has a good level of detail! There are some formatting issues in the "Other mixed languages" section, though, with the unnecessary white space and subheader capitalization. Drbazzi (talk) 07:53, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

Great page! I like your definition of mixed languages, and the introduction paragraph is very helpful and clear-cut. I agree that the manner of writing could be more formal to make it more academic. Also, a minor suggestion: in the Definition section, maybe after the first paragraph, you could include one sentence saying what other similar concepts there are. This makes it easier on the reader when they go to the second paragraph where it starts off with differentiating mixed languages and pidgins--it is a little abrupt without an introduction of the potential confusions among those similar terms. Other than that (I'm not sure which parts you modified the most on this page), it's a great, well-structured page! Crfrances (talk) 18:43, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

Excellent page! I agree with a few of the above commentors that the "Sociolinguistic aspects" section is redundant, at least in its present form. This section should discuss general patterns seen in mixed languages and how those languages arise from specific social dynamics. The examples are good, and I also appreciated that you provided a more exhaustive list of hyperlinks at the bottom of the page. Great work! Kdinatale (talk) 07:16, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

Excellent work! I actually like the portion under sociolinguistic aspects, but recommend you expand it beyond just michif. The examples are excellent, and yay for hyperlinking. I agree with the more formal writing critique, as sometimes it feels unclear as to what ya'll are referring to. But for a first draft, this is excellent work!Hamzajaka (talk) 22:01, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

Nice page! I also agree that the Sociolinguistic Aspects section is a bit odd. Anyway, I think you could break up the Definitions section into subsections for clarity and ease of reading. Perhaps the subsections could be something like "Mixed language and intertwined language," "Mixed language vs. Pidgins/Creoles," and "Mixed language vs. Code-Switching." Also, in the fourth paragraph, the definition for a pidgin language wasn't very clear. Mentioning mixed languages and fluency twice (in that same paragraph) was a bit redundant. In the fifth paragraph, you should provide a short definition of code-switching. I thought you gave some nice examples. Good job! Elizalinguistics (talk) 08:27, 19 November 2013 (UTC)


The discussion of specific mixed languages is the strong point of this page, but the higher-level descriptive and theoretical discussion, which is very, very important, still requires considerable attention.

  • The 'Definition' section needs some work, as several commenters suggested; The definition of a mixed languages as a language "that combines lexical items and grammar of two (or more) languages that can be easily identified" is not quite precise enough (e.g., I'm not sure it excludes Post-Norman Invasion English), and it is moreover not clear what is meant by 'combination'. I think that you need to both make clear the nature of the systematic splits one finds in the grammar of mixed languages and exemplify these splits so that the reader can grasp what your talking about. Note also that this section has no linked citations, which is a real weakness.
  • The 'Differentiation..." section has no linked citations. It is also somewhat unclear, since it is not based on a good definition of 'mixed language' -- see above.
  • "Mixed Language speakers are fluent, even native, speakers of both languages." Not true! They may be monolingual speakers of the mixed language. It is true that at the point of genesis of the mixed language, bilingualism was crucial, but that is not necessarily true subsequently.
  • Shouldn't the 'Sociolinguistic Aspects' section discuss the sociolinguistic contexts of the emergence of mixed languages in general, as several commenters suggest, possibly with discussion of specific cases, and not a discussion of discrimination against Míchif speakers, which doesn't really have anything to do with mixed languages as such. I think the absence of any focused discussion of the social contexts for the emergence of mixed languages needs to be remedied.

In summary, the primary areas that require attention are the higher-level conceptual ones; the discussions of specific languages are quite good. Ldmanthroling (talk) 17:05, 19 November 2013 (UTC)

Excellent job, this is a difficult topic to explain for a variety of reasons. I agree with Lev that you should fix the factual error about Mixed language speakers bilingualism. To my knowledge the fact that some speakers are monolingual is a really crucial piece of evidence for a mixed language. I don't really have a problem with the language you use that has been deemed "informal," but it is true that for a wikipedia article you perhaps want to be more concise. Your examples are very good, but I agree with Lev that more info on the higher level conceptual aspects seems necessary. Efgoodrich (talk) 17:14, 19 November 2013 (UTC)

I was really impressed by the Cases of Mixed Languages section. The descriptions are thorough, but easy to understand. I think with a few exceptions, you went into the right amount of detail in breaking down both the social and linguistic elements to each of the mixed languages you describe there (I mean, is it really necessary to explain the "token" system?). However, I think your introduction and Definitions sections could be worked on a bit. I know a lot of it is left over from the original page, but I think it would be helpful to edit them with some of the information from our discussion of mixed languages in lecture, which contradicted some of the information here, and to clean up the writing a bit. The intro especially is a bit wordy. But overall, it was a well done page. Frannieu12 (talk) 04:56, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

The page really helped my understanding of mixed languages. However, the case studies could be somewhat more "animated" -- a chart of the "linguistic faults" where the two languages split would be very useful! Other than that, the definitions really did help make mixed languages stick. Warrenmcbieber (talk) 20:51, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

As others have said, the strongest part of the page is the examples section. The links to individual pages on each of the mixed languages provide a great deal of case studies that can help shape the reader's perception of mixed languages. Here are some suggestions for improving the top sections. Introduction: Either remove the part about emerging ethnic groups or elaborate more on this topic in the non-examples sections of the page. Definitions: Reword the end of the second sentence of the second paragraph...it becomes difficult to read towards the end. Remove mention of Ardens...a citation should suffice. Differentiation with other language mixtures: rename section to Mixed languages vs. language mixtures, or something else to correct what I think is an improper prepositional idiom "differentiation with". You call Spanglish an example of codeswitching, but the Spanglish page calls it a pidgin. Finally, citations are needed for this section and the Definitions section. Jeffbutters (talk) 05:08, 21 November 2013 (UTC)

Good job. The Cases of Mixed Languages section is super. Like some others have pointed out, providing more citations would be good, adequately describing the overarching concepts related to mixed languages is pretty pertinent, and cleaning up the wording in general is an inevitable 'must'. M.karie (talk) 03:18, 21 November 2013 (UTC)

Nicely done. I think the organization of this page is really well thought out and contributes to a nice overall flow of the argument. I would recommend re-wording some of it; particularly in the "definitions" section, the prose gets a little bit wordy and long-winded. I think the writing could be made clearer by shortening some of the sentences. Also, you may think about changing the title of the "definitions" section, as it seems to highlight competing theories more than just the definitions. Perhaps just re-titling it "competing definitions" would suffice. Tinydancer.egreen (talk) 18:11, 21 November 2013 (UTC)

Great page! Nice reorganizing; it's also well cited. I agree with above commenters that the 'Definition" section is a little wordy and could maybe be restructured. Small nitpicks: for the "Light Walpiri" section, perhaps making a paragraph break for why it's considered a new language would be easier to read. Also, I don't know that the last section of Michif about the 'token-system' is a little unnecessary. If you want to keep it, then maybe expand on it or reword it so it fits into the rest of the section better? Overall, though, very informative. Catclawnym (talk) 19:50, 21 November 2013 (UTC)

questionable languages[edit]

Languages are constantly being called "mixed" because of foreign influence, and some of that ends up here. We really need sources, at least in the main articles. So, we describe Bonin English as a creole, Yeniche as jargon (though in an exceptionally bad article), Surzhyk looks macaronic, and Jopara just looks like a case of heaving borrowing like in Chicano Spanish. (After all, Japanese conjugates some English verbs like 'double' following Japanese patterns, but no-one considers Japanese to be a mixed language.) I tagged these for refs, and plan on removing them soon if we don't find any. And I removed Surzhyk as the very first example in the article, considering we haven't even shown it to belong in the article. — kwami (talk) 09:08, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

We're down to Erromintxela. If it counts as mixed, wouldn't all or at least many Para-Romani languages count as well? We have classified them all as mixed in their info boxes, so settling this question will affect several articles. — kwami (talk) 04:13, 13 November 2013 (UTC)
All the sources I could find on Erromintxela are in the article already. I think the problem is that, having just re-read this article, the definition of a mixed language seems extremely vague. I get the bit that about creoles/pidgins but the last paragraph is really confusing, the bit makes specific reference to Anglo-Romani. I know what a register is and Anglo-Romani has registers itself but I cannot see how anyone could classify AR as a register of English. If AR is a register of English, the Erromintxela is a register of Basque but I don't think that works. Akerbeltz (talk) 11:47, 13 November 2013 (UTC)
  • The Only reasonable thing we can do is to include the languages that hae been called mixed with a source to who called them that ad include the criteria under which they weredefined as such. We dont decid whose definitions are right and which are wrong.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 14:45, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

Petuh dialect is an unref'd orphan that could use review. — kwami (talk) 04:09, 11 February 2014 (UTC)

The other languages' articles on Petuh have some refs that could be used; they're not in English, though. Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:26, 11 February 2014 (UTC)

Duplication of content[edit]

There is near verbatim duplication of the final two paragraphs of the Definitions section as the final two paragraphs of the following Differentiation section.

I don't know which section they better belong in. Thryduulf (talk) 03:17, 17 February 2014 (UTC)