Palmerston Island is a tiny isolated community in the Pacific. Over the past 140 years it has developed a unique linguistic and cultural identity, influenced by England, the Cook Islands, and more recently New Zealand. The islanders strongly identify with England and consider themselves very different from the rest of the Cook Islands, to which Palmerston Island officially belongs. This paper explores the relationship between Palmerston Islanders' conceptions of themselves and their linguistic ideologies. It is shown that the construction of linguistic and social norms is not entirely subconscious: the community is aware of the different origins of lexical items, and the cultural and social affiliations signalled by different linguistic choices. Subconscious co-evolution of culture and language also takes place and appears likely to be responsible for the substrate influences of Cook Island Mäori in both realms.
|Journal||Te Reo: Journal of the Linguistics Society of New Zealand|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|