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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Language Sciences

Undergraduate Course: Celtic, English, and Norse in Contact (LASC10092)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryIn this course you will become familiar with the most important linguistic properties of languages historically spoken in the British Isles, with an emphasis on Celtic languages, and with the impact of contact between the Celtic languages, English, and Norse on the histories of these languages.
Course description This course familiarizes students with the history and linguistic properties of languages spoken in the British Isles, with an emphasis on Celtic languages and on contact between English, Norse, and Celtic. It provides an introduction to the historical situation of the Celtic and North Germanic languages in the British Isles and the circumstances of language contact; an overview of the most important structural properties of the Celtic languages, both those attested in earlier historical periods and modern varieties; and an introduction to aspects of historical sociolinguistics, with an emphasis on the study of language contact. Armed with this knowledge, students will be in a position to tackle issues around the role of language contact in shaping the past and present of languages spoken in the British Isles; topics covered include 'the Celtic hypothesis' (the early influence of Celtic on Old and Middle English), the impact of contact with North Germanic (with consideration of both English and Gaelic), and modern 'Celtic Englishes'.

The course assumes no familiarity with any modern or ancient Celtic language.

More information may be found here:
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: LEL2A: Linguistic Theory and the Structure of English (LASC08017) OR Gaelic 2A (CELT08006) OR Gaelic 2B (CELT08007)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 Linguistics/Language Sciences courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an understanding the main structural properties of major ancient and modern Celtic languages
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of issues in historical sociolinguistics and the study of historical language contact
  3. Be able to critically discuss the major controversies around historical language contact in the British Isles
  4. Be able to identify potential contact features in modern English varieties and critically discuss the question of whether they are of internal or external origin
  5. Acquire sufficient subject knowledge and study skills to be able to engage with advanced research issues in historical sociolinguistics, including the study of historical language contact
Reading List
Ball, Martin and Nicole Müller, ed. 2008. The Celtic languages. London: Routledge. 2nd edition.
Borgstrøm, Carl Hjalmar. 1974. On the influence of Norse on Scottish Gaelic. Lochlann 6, 91-107.
Filppula, Markku, Juhani Klemola and Heli Paulasto. 2008. English and Celtic in contact. London: Routledge.
Harris, John. 1997. Phonological systems in collision in the north of Ireland. In Hildegard L. C. Tristram (ed.) The Celtic Englishes, 201-224. Heidelberg: Winter.
McWhorter, John. 2009. What else happened to English? A brief for the Celtic hypothesis. English Language and Linguistics 13(2), 163-191.
Trudgill. Peter. 2010. Investigations in sociohistorical linguistics: Stories of colonisation and contact. Cambridge: CUP
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Pavel Iosad
Tel: (0131 6)50 3948
Course secretaryMiss Emma Nelson
Tel: (0131 6)50 9870
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