Prof. Michel DeGraff
MIT Course Number
As Taught In
- Selected video lectures
- Assignments: presentations with examples
- Assignments: written (no examples)
The Instructor Insights section features video interviews with Professor Michel DeGraff in both Kreyòl and English.
Caribbean Creole languages result from language contact via colonization and the slave trade. In this course we explore the history of Creole languages from cognitive, historical and comparative perspectives. We evaluate popular theories about "Creole genesis" and the role of language acquisition. Then we explore the non-linguistic aspects of Creole formation, using sources from literature, religion and music. We also look into issues of Caribbean identities as we examine Creole speakers' and others' beliefs and attitudes toward their cultures. We also make comparisons with relevant aspects of African-American culture in the U.S.
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