Research Centres and Institutes >
Centre for Amerindian, Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CAS) >
Centre for Amerindian, Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CAS) Theses >
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
|Title: ||Nahuatl in the Huasteca Hidalguense : a case study in the sociology of language|
|Authors: ||Stiles, Neville|
|Supervisors: ||Gifford, Douglas J.|
|Issue Date: ||1982|
|Abstract: ||This thesis examines the vitality of Hidalgo Nahuatl (HN) in the
communities of Jaltocan, Panacaxtlan, Santa Cruz, Santa Teresa
and Zohuala in the Huasteca Hidalguense, Mexico.
The research, conducted in Mexico and St. Andrews University
from 1976-1982, applies an analysis of HN within the framework of
the Sociology of Language and Dependency Theory, thereby using a
multi-disciplinary approach. Through an investigation of the historical,
social, cultural and economic factors related to HN, the
latter is embedded in its reality.
HN is shown to be originally a language of dependency and oppression,
supported by a long mestizo tradition of "caciquismo". It is
demonstrated that an increasing number of Spanish (S) monolinguals,
together with other socio-economic factors, is encouraging Nahuas
to bilingualize and S:: =A. is fast becoming the new language of dependency.
The Hidalgo Nahuas possess practical reasons for the acquisition
of S., these being to solve their daily problems - especially
land tenancy -, to communicate with the mestizo out-group and to
undertake trading with non-HN speakers. However, the Nahuas are
not surrendering their native language as they bilingualize, but
rather, tend to limit its usage to native Nahua contexts and speakers.
HN has become important to the Nahuas in order to demonstrate
their ethnic identity and territoriality.
The introduction of government projects to the communities, such as
the Castellanizacion project or bilingual-bicultural education, are
shown to be theoretically bilingual in approach, but fail to take
into account sufficiently the regional Indian language in the praxis.
The stable maintenance of HN is highlighted by statistical results
from the word-count of recorded texts, documents and publications
and the range of morphological phenomena affecting S. words
in HN is described with examples from the Corpus.
The linguistic interference from S. in HN is located within Dependency
Theory and this author suggests the use of the term dependency
word rather than loan word and dependency language, thus implying
a diachronic sociological process which is reflected in HN.
Extended Texts are offered as evidence of the linguistic standard
of HN and attitudes of Nahuas towards their language are presented.
The final conclusion is that modern HN is a viable, vital and
functional language at the time of undertaking this research and
demonstrates a frequent usage by a large number of speakers. HN
has still not entered into:. -avital process of language death, as
is the case in other Nahuatl-speaking regions of Mexico, and is
still being maintained, particularly at community level, by adults
and children alike.|
|Appears in Collections:||Centre for Amerindian, Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CAS) Theses|
Social Anthropology Theses
Items in DSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.