Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

The reallocation of [ʝ] in cypriot greek

Panayiotis A. Pappas


This  article examines the variation between lateral palatal ([ʎ]) and fricative palatal ([ʝ])  instantiations of the variable (liV) in Cypriot Greek. Through the analysis of two datasets, one based on  sociolinguistic interviews, and one based on elicitation task s, it is shown that the fricative variant, which  used to be associated mainly with the city of Ammochostos (Famagusta), is now present in all three major  urban centres of the island, and that young men are leading the change. The circumstances that led to  this  development are examined from the perspective of the socio - psychological model proposed by Britain  (1997), and it is argued that this is a case of socio - stylistic reallocation (Trudgill 1986). Viewed within the  context of sociolinguistic tension that  has existed between Cypriot Greek and the standard varieties for  more than a century, the emergence and spread of a native variant is seen as another sign that the status  of Cypriot Greek vernacular is increasing within the community.

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