Spanish in Utica


"Spanish in the Utica area" seeks to answer the "who, when, where, and how" of Spanish spoken and written in the Utica area.  This project is a study in contact linguistics but also hopes to enhance visibility of the local Hispanic community.  Please click
here for some general information.

The manuscript "Language selection by Hispanics in a small upstate New York community" Sociolinguistic Studies, 2012  studies the self-reported language use of 54 Latinos who live and work in the Utica area, across three generations. The results show that there is language shift to English by the third generation; nevertheless, Hispanics are still able to maintain Spanish in Utica even in formal domains such as in religious and business contexts.  A study about code-switching, subject pronoun use, nominal possession in Utica Spanish is available in "Watching the development of US Spanish: Data from a small, upstate city in New York." In R. Muhr,, Exploring linguistic standards in non-dominant varieties of pluricentric languages/ Explorando estándardes lingüísticos en variedades no dominantes de lenguas pluricéntricas (pp 457- 471).  A comparison, "In search of a standard: Spanish in a small, upstate NY community," of those parameters in spoken Utica Spanish and written Spanish, obtained from El despertar hispano-americano, a column published in the Utica newspaper Observer-Dispatch (O-D) 1993- 1994, is currently in press.

Juan A. Thomas

book cover jat

Utica Hispanic Festival August 2011  
Utica City Hall
5th Annual Hispanic Heritage Festival
August 2011

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