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On the Features of Hong Kong English

A Corpus Analysis



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On the Features of Hong Kong English by John Michael Culnan
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This dissertation, "On the Features of Hong Kong English: a Corpus Analysis" by John Michael, Culnan, was obtained from The University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong) and is being sold pursuant to Creative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License. The content of this dissertation has not been altered in any way. We have altered the formatting in order to facilitate the ease of printing and reading of the dissertation. All rights not granted by the above license are retained by the author. Abstract: To date, research on Hong Kong English (HKE) has not included comprehensive examinations of the variety on the basis of its morphosyntactic features; rather, individual features, phonetic patterns or lexical idiosyncrasies have been used as a means of discussing general tendencies (see Bolton, 2000; Bolton, 2002; Sewell, 2015; Wong, 2007; and Wong, 2010 for previous studies). The present study starts by establishing HKE as a separate dialect through a statistical comparison with American English (AmE) and British English (BrE) used in statistical dialectology (Szmrecsanyi, 2011). Subsequently, the most frequent features and those that occur in significantly different amounts in HKE than in AmE or BrE are discovered by examining three natural language corpora using a set of 76 morphosyntactic features developed by Kortmann and Szmrecsanyi (2004) for comparison of dialects of English. This analysis identifies the ten morphosyntactic features that are most common in written HKE and a set of fourteen key features of HKE: Nonstandard Article Use, No Plural Markers in Measure Words, No Past Tense, Leveling of Present Perfect and Simple Past, Was/Were Generalization, No 3rd Singular Present -s, 3rd Singular Present -s for All Present Tense, Serial Verbs, Subject Gapping, Lack of Inversion in Yes/No Questions, Lack of Inversion/Auxiliaries in wh- Questions, and Inverted Word Order in Indirect Questions, plus a notable absence of the features Adverb Form Matches Adjective, and Degree Modifiers Lack -ly. Subjects: English language - China - Hong KongCorpora (Linguistics)
Release date NZ
January 26th, 2017
Country of Publication
United States
colour illustrations
Open Dissertation Press
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