15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

The Case for Fusion: Judeo-Ibero-Romance in Europe, Asia, and Latin America

Eduardo D. Faingold

University of Tulsa, USA

Judeo-Ibero-Romance has been commonly characterized as a koine: a mixture of mutually intelligible varieties of closely related languages, showing neutralization or loss of marked and minority forms. This paper argues that although some dialects of Judeo-Ibero-Romance (e.g. Bucharest) appear to be koinés, others (e.g. Istanbul, Salonika, Monastir, Temuco) represent a different category of language types: that of "fusion". The components of a fusion language are not as well integrated into a single system. Fusion languages manifest "compartmentalization" of components, the co-existence, rather than neutralization, of marked rules and structures. In Salonika, Istanbul, Monastir, and Temuco Judeo-Ibero-Romance, there are many lexical items which display the Spanish intervocalic fricatives [β], [ɗ], [ɣ], final nasal [n], and unstressed mid-vowels [e], [o], in final and other positions. Yet, there are almost as many lexical items where unstressed vowels are realized in the Portuguese manner as [i], [u], where intervocalic sounds are realized as stops [b], [d], [g], and final nasals as the bilabial stop [m] or as a nasal vowel. The emergence of fusion languages is explained as a function of the simultaneous acquisition of literacy in Spanish, Portuguese, Hebrew, and other languages.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Faingold, Eduardo D. (2003): "The case for fusion: Judeo-Ibero-Romance in Europe, Asia, and Latin America", In ICPhS-15, 3049-3052.