Germanisms in American Speech
GRIN Verlag, 2008 - 56 pages
Seminar paper from the year 2008 in the subject American Studies - Linguistics, grade: 1,0, University of Cologne, course: Differences in American and British English, 27 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: In past years, many studies have been published concerning the influence of English, especially of American English, on the German language. Many people complain about the hotchpotch of English and German used by present-day youths. They blame the media for the destruction of the German language. This even led to the founding of an association, der Verein Deutsche Sprache, to protect the German language. However, few people seem to be aware that German has made a sizeable contribution to the American English vocabulary too, even though this is not as large as the contribution of English to the German language. As will be shown in this paper, words denoting foods, drinks, amusements, skiing activities, German inventions and parts of the education system were borrowed by the native population. Borrowing from German started with the early colonial settlers in the 17th century, settling in Pennsylvania and evolving the Pennsylvanian German which is not of interest in this paper as it is completely different from the usage of German words of an average American, and has continued to the present time. This paper deals with Germanisms in American speech and is intended to give an overview of the concept of borrowing. Firstly, the processes of borrowing with its examples of distant and intimate borrowing are traced. Stanforth's monograph Deutsche Einflusse auf den englischen Wortschatz in Geschichte und Gegenwart serves as the basis. Afterwards, in accordance to Haugen, his categorisation of the loan material into importation, substitution, partial-substitution and their subdivisions loan words, loan meanings, loan coinages, loan blends and loan compounds are represented with examples. The following paragraphs elaborate on the naturalization of the
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