Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

Language Contact and Intonation: Evidence from Contrastive Focus Marking and Loanwords in Yucatecan Spanish and Yucatec Maya

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2020), 97, (1), 31–58.

Abstract

This paper investigates the language contact between Yucatecan Spanish and Yucatec Maya (Mayan) in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, at the level of the intonational realization of contrastive focus, and by means of the prosody of Spanish loanwords in Yucatec Maya. In Yucatec Maya, the maximally prominent constituent of an utterance is generally located at the leftmost part of the Intonational Phrase that contains the predicate (Verhoeven & Skopeteas 2015 reported similar results for Yucatec Maya and Uth 2016 for Yucatecan Spanish) unlike standard Mexican Spanish (as Carme De la Mota, Pedro Martín Butragueño and Pilar Prieto recorded in 2010). Here we present the results of an intonational comparison of contrastive focus utterances of Yucatecan Spanish and Yucatec Maya in order to test the hypothesis that this similarity is due to contact. Furthermore, we present additional evidence in favour of the presence of a left high tone in Yucatec Maya, based on a pilot study on the pronunciation of Spanish loanwords.

Access Token
£25.00

Works cited

Barrera Vásquez, Alfredo, 1977. ‘El idioma español en Yucatán’, Enciclopedia Yucatanense VI: 341–75. Google Scholar

Bennett, Ryan, 2016. ‘Mayan Phonology’, Language and Linguistics Compass 10: 469–514. Google Scholar

Bisang, Walter, 2006. ‘Linguistic Areas, Language Contact and Typology: Some Implications from the Case of Ethiopia as a Linguistic Area’, in Linguistic Areas: Convergence in Historical and Typological Perspective, ed. Yaron Matras, April McMahon and Nigel Vincent (London: Palgrave Macmillan), pp. 75–98. Google Scholar

Bricker, Victoria, Eleuterio Po’ot Yah and Ofelia Dzul de Po’ot, 1998. A Dictionary of the Maya Language as Spoken in Hocaba, Yucatan (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press). Google Scholar

De la Mota, Carme, Pedro Martín Butragueño and Pilar Prieto, 2010. ‘Mexican Spanish Intonation’, in Transcription of Intonation of the Spanish Language, ed. P. Prieto and P. Roseano (Munich: Lincom Europa), pp. 319–50. Google Scholar

Face, Timothy, 2003. ‘Intonation in Spanish Declaratives: Differences Between Lab Speech and Spontaneous Speech’, Catalan Journal of Linguistics 2: 115–31. Google Scholar

Frazier, Melissa, 2009. ‘The Production and Perception of Pitch and Glottalization in Yucatec Maya’, Ph.D. dissertation, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Google Scholar

Frazier, Melissa, 2015. ‘Pitch and Glottalization as Cues to Contrast in Yucatec Maya’, in The Phonetics and Phonology of Laryngeal Features in Native American Languages, ed. Heriberto Avelino, Matt Coler and Leo Wetzels (Leiden: Brill), pp. 203–34. Google Scholar

Gabriel, Christoph, 2007. Fokus im Spannungsfeld von Phonologie und Syntax: Eine Studie zum Spanischen (Frankfurt am Main: Vervuert). Google Scholar

Gabriel, Christoph, 2010. ‘On Focus, Prosody, and Word Order in Argentinean Spanish: A Minimalist OT Account’, Revista Virtual de Estudos da Linguagem 4 (Special Edition): 183–222. Google Scholar

Grice, Martine, and Melanie Uth, 2015. ‘Early High Pitch and Contrastive Focus in Yucatecan Spanish’, Poster presentation at Phonetics and Phonology in Europe 2015, Cambridge, UK. Google Scholar

Gussenhoven, Carlos, and Renske Teeuw, 2008. ‘A Moraic and a Syllabic H Tone in Tucatec Maya’, in Fonología instrumental: patrones fónicos y variación lingüística, ed. Esther Herrera and Pedro Martin Butragueño (Mexico City: El Colegio de México), pp. 49–72. Google Scholar

Gutiérrez-Bravo, Rodrigo, 2006. Structural Markedness and Syntactic Structure: A Study of Word Order and the Left-periphery in Mexican Spanish (New York: Routledge/ Taylor & Francis). Google Scholar

Gutiérrez-Bravo, Rodrigo, and Jorge Monforte, 2011. ‘Focus, Agent Focus and Relative Clauses in Yucatec Maya’, in New Perspectives on Mayan Linguistics, ed. Heriberto Avelino (Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing), pp. 257–74. Google Scholar

Gutiérrez-Bravo, Rodrigo, Melanie Uth and C. Martín Sobrino, 2019. ‘Contrastive Focus in Yucatecan Spanish’, in The Syntactic Variation of Spanish Dialects, ed. Ángel J. Gallego (Oxford: Oxford University Press), pp. 275–96. Google Scholar

INEGI 2010. Censo de Población y Vivienda 2010. Mexico City: Institute. www.inegi.org.mx/programas/ccpv/2010. Accessed 25 November 2019. Google Scholar

Kidder, Emily, 2013. ‘Stress in Yucatec Maya. Syncretism in Loanword Incorporation as Evidence for Stress Patterns’, in The Persistence of Language Constructing and Confronting the Past and Present in the Voices of Jane H. Hill, ed. Shannon T. Bischoff, Deborah Cole, Amy V. Fountain and Mizuki Miyashita (Amsterdam: John Benjamins), pp. 53–84. Google Scholar

Kim, Sahyang, and Heriberto Avelino, 2003. ‘An Intonational Study of Focus and Word Order Variation in Mexican Spanish’, in La tonia: dimensiones fonéticas y fonológicas, ed. Esther Herrera and Pedro M. Butragueño (Mexico City: El Colegio de México), pp. 357–74. Google Scholar

Krämer, Martin, 2001. ‘Yucatec Maya Vowel Alternations: Harmony as Syntagmatic Identity’, Zeitschrift für Sprachwissenschaften 20: 175–217. Google Scholar

Krifka, Manfred, 2007. ‘Basic Notions of Information Structure’, Interdisciplinary Studies on Information Structure 6: 13–55. Google Scholar

Kügler, Frank, and Stavros Skopeteas, 2006. ‘Interaction of Lexical Tone and Information Structure in Yucatec Maya’, in Proc. 2nd International Symposium on Tonal Aspects of Languages, La Rochelle, France, pp. 83–88. Google Scholar

Lope Blanch, Juan M., 1987. ‘México’, in Manual de dialectología hispánica. El español de América, ed. Manuel Alvar (Barcelona: Ariel), pp. 81–89. Google Scholar

Lope Blanch, Juan M., 1996. Estudios sobre el español de Yucatán. 1st ed. (Mexico City: Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México). Google Scholar

Martín Butragueño, Érika Mendoza Pedro and Leonor Orozco, 2015. ‘Aproximación a la prosodia del español de México: datos del COEM [Corpus Oral del Español de México]’, Presentation at AMLA, XIII Congreso Nacional de Lingüística, October 7–10 (Mexico: Tuxtla Gutiérrez). Google Scholar

Mediz Bolio, Antonio, 1951. Interinfluencia del maya con el español de Yucatán (Mérida: Zamná). Google Scholar

Michnowicz, Jim, and Hilary Barnes, 2013. ‘A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Pre-nuclear Peak Alignment in Yucatan Spanish’, in Selected Proceedings of the 15th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium, ed. Chad Howe, Sarah E. Blackwell and Margaret Lubbers Quesada (Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Proceedings Project), pp. 221–35. Google Scholar

Monforte, Jorge, Lázaro Dzul and Rodrigo Gutiérrez-Bravo, 2010. Narraciones Mayas (Mexico City: Instituto Nacional de Lenguas Indígenas). Google Scholar

Pike, Kenneth, 1946. ‘Phonemic Pitch in Maya’, International Journal of American Linguistics 12: 82–88. Google Scholar

Sobrino, C. Martín, 2010. ‘Contacto lingüístico maya-español: transferencias en la morfosintaxis del español yucateco’, Temas Antropológicos 32: 79–94. Google Scholar

Suárez, Victor M., 1996. ‘El español que se habla en Yucatán’, Ms., Universidad de Yucatán. Google Scholar

Uth, Melanie, 2016. ‘Prosodic Realization of Contrastive Focus in Yucatecan Spanish: Spanish Dominant and Monolingual Speakers Opposed to Balanced Bilinguals’, Romanistisches Jahrbuch 67: 255–83. Google Scholar

Verhoeven, Elisabeth, and Stavros Skopeteas, 2015. ‘Licensing Focus Constructions in Yucatec Maya’, International Journal of American Linguistics 81: 1–40. Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

UTH, MELANIE

GUTIÉRREZ-BRAVO, RODRIGO