Kormakiti Arabic: A study of language decay and language death

Gulle, Ozan
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University of Hawai'i Press
Kormakiti Arabic (also called Cypriot Maronite Arabic) is a language with approximately 150–200 speakers in Kormakitis, a village north-western Cyprus. Kormakiti Arabic is highly endangered, not only due to its low number of speakers but more importantly because younger Maronites with their roots in Kormakitis do not acquire Kormakiti Arabic naturally any more. Kormakitis itself is almost only inhabited by elderly Maronites who lived there before the separation of Cyprus in 1974. This paper is on language death and language decay of Kormakiti Arabic. Several historical sources are used in order to illustrate the historical and socio-linguistic environment this language survived until today. The linguistic evidence is then compared with the theory of Gaelic-Arvanitika-Model Sasse (1992a) in order to show parallels, as well as the differences between Arvanitika and Kormakiti Arabic.
Gulle, Ozan. 2016. Kormakiti Arabic: A study of language decay and language death. In Vera Ferreira and Peter Bouda (eds.). Language Documentation and Conservation in Europe. 38-50. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press.
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