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A study of European, Persian and Arabic loans in standard Sorani
Uppsala University, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Faculty of Languages, Department of Asian and African Languages.
1999 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This dissertation examines processes of lexical borrowing in the Sorani standard of the Kurdish language, spoken in Iraq, Iran, and the Kurdish diaspora. Borrowing, a form of language contact, occurs on all levels of language structure. In the pre-standard literary Kurdish (Kirmanci and Sorani) which emerged in the pre-modern period, borrowing from Arabic and Persian was a means of developing a distinct literary and linguistic tradition. By contrast, in standard Sorani and Kirmanci, borrowing from the state languages, Arabic, Persian, and Turkish, is treated as a form of domination, a threat to the language, character, culture, and national distinctness of the Kurdish nation. The response to borrowing is purification through coinage, internal borrowing, and other means of extending the lexical resources of the language.

As a subordinate language, Sorani is subjected to varying degrees of linguistic repression, and this has not allowed it to develop freely. Since Sorani speakers have been educated only in Persian (Iran), or predominantly in Arabic, European loans in Sorani are generally indirect borrowings from Persian and Arabic (Iraq). These loans constitute a major source for lexical modernisation. The study provides wordlists of European loanwords used by Hâmin and other codifiers of Sorani. Most European loanwords are well established, used in magazines, books, and the spoken language although they are neither standardised in their spelling nor registered in Kurdish dictionaries. Some loan blends, loan shifts, creations, and pure Kurdish words introduced into Sorani are also established. However, under conditions of intensive language contact, borrowing and purification continue to be the main trends of standardisation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 1999. , 176 p.
Reports on Asian and African studies, ISSN 1404-0743 ; 1
Keyword [en]
Languages and linguistics, borrowing, purification, language contact, standard Sorani Kurdish, Mukri dialect, norm conflict, Silemani dialect, modernisation, standardisation, nationalism
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Specific Languages
Research subject
Iranian Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-53ISBN: 91-506-1353-7OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-53DiVA: diva2:166021
Public defence
1999-06-07, Ihresalen, Språkvetenskapligt centrum, Villavägen 4, Uppsala, Uppsala, 10:15
Available from: 1999-05-17 Created: 1999-05-17Bibliographically approved

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