Article of various
viewpoints and aspects common to
the Southern Caribbean
'English,' the language
of the Southern
by Walter Robinson II,
with a contributed article by Alister Hughes
Before my family came to Carriacou to live, I was pleasantly surprised when I
discovered that the people of Grenada, like most of the Southern Caribbean, reportedly spoke "English." However, when we
actually arrived, we quickly realized that the English they spoke was quite
different from that to which we had been accustomed.
I have found that as long as most Americans speak slowly and distinctly, and
the West Indians do the same, most can communicate and be understood clearly.
However, it takes an acquired ear for many Americans to understand West Indians
when they are speaking among themselves. I am no linguist by a long shot, but I
have lived in the Caribbean long enough to know that most West Indians
concatenate (link or connect in continuous patterns) their words differently. They also
often emphasize the last
syllable of many words, which often changes its sound significantly. Lastly,
they also use idioms that are not readily understood by many Americans. But on
this last point, I believe that many idioms and commonly accepted phrases are
more readily understood by those that speak British English to some degree.
In any case, I discovered an article years ago that had been
written by a gentleman, who is an accomplished author that is native to Grenada.
I am very please to be able to present his excellent article here with his
permission. His name is Alister Hughes, and the article is entitled,
The Language." You may click on the embedded link in the title immediately above, or the link in the
top boarder of this page to read it. Enjoy!
Thanks, Mr. Hughes, for allowing me to post your informative article here.
Walter Robinson II
January 9, 2003
Stay tuned as I plan to add more article in the future!
March 09, 2009.