Variation and change in the historical Galician/Portuguese language system


The project "Variation and change in the historical Galician/Portuguese language system" (Variación e cambio no sistema lingüístico histórico galego-portugués), is the product of a partnership between Brazilian researchers (from the Universidade Federal Fluminense and the Universidade de São Paulo) and Galician researchers (from the USC). Its focus is a comparison between Galician and colloquial Brazilian Portuguese. Given the common origin, in Galician/Portuguese, of the language varieties being compared, the idea is to investigate analogous phenomena in Galician and Brazilian Portuguese, broadening the comparative approach that has been applied hitherto when explaining the features of different varieties of Brazilian Portuguese while reappraising the traditional ways of accounting for the present-day traits of Galician. Thus it is an attempt to view the historical and linguistic Galician-Portuguese-Brazilian diasystem not only from the traditional perspective which focuses on "national languages", but in terms of the (sub)systems of which they consist. In dealing with Galician and Brazilian Portuguese, the overriding assumption in the project is not one of a strict historical continuity between Mediaeval Galician and colloquial Brazilian Portuguese, but rather one of genetic relatedness. The project proposes to examine processes of convergence and divergence, innovation and conservatism, which the different varieties of the Galician-Portuguese-Brazilian diasystem have progressively shaped and reshaped. The initial results are already fairly intriguing and give reasons not only for a revisiting of traditional analyses and assumptions but also for undertaking new studies.

Execution date: 
Funded by: 
1ª Fase: Secretaría General de Universidades (Ministerio de Educación, España), convenio de cooperación con CAPES (Ministério de Educação, Brasil). PHB2009-0079-TA/PHB2009-0092-TA