Revisiting Creoles and Other Languages in the Lusophone Indian Ocean
This chapter approaches the issue of Indian Ocean connections from the point of view of Creole languages and Konkani, through scholarship and writing related to them. In particular, it highlights the possibilities partly opened up by the path-breaking work of Monsignor Sebastião Rodolpho Dalgado (1855–1922) in Goa, former Portuguese India, in the domain of, on the one hand, Konkani, and on the other, Indo-Portuguese and Ceylon (Sri Lankan) Creoles. Furthermore, it shows Dalgado’s larger oeuvre—including etymology, historiography, and lexicography as well as translations of Sanskrit classics into Portuguese—as an attempt to localize Portuguese colonial legacy in an Asian setting, where nationalist movements were coming up in the first decades of the twentieth century; and where British colonialism in particular held sway over India and other colonies (e.g., Ceylon), eventually threatening the very survival of Portuguese power in its remaining small Asian enclaves. It also shows that Dalgado’s work extended, from his point of departure (namely, the vast and varied colonial history of Portugal in Asia), over a field of languages and texts reaching a good deal of Asia well beyond the borders of contemporary Portuguese colonial enclaves.
KeywordsIndian Ocean Language Policy Local Language Mother Tongue Asian Language
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