A Grammar of Elfdalian

Yair Sapir and Olof Lundgren


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Elfdalian is the language traditionally spoken in Övdaln (Älvdalen), central Sweden. Due to its linguistic differences to Swedish, several attempts have been made to acquire an official recognition of Elfdalian as a minority language in Sweden. However, despite growing interest in documenting and revitalising Elfdalian, it is still regarded as a dialect.

As one of the best-preserved members of a larger but lesser-known Dalecarlian (or Dalmål) sub-branch of the Scandinavian languages, Elfdalian is a unique language to study. The purpose of the grammar is to account for Late Classical, or 'Preserved', Elfdalian from linguistic, historical and sociolinguistic angles, and to make the language, including both its archaic and innovative features, accessible to a wider audience.

The grammar has multiple target groups: people in Övdaln who wish to revitalise or reclaim their language in a more original form than the one it was transferred into through language decline and Swedish influence since the beginning of the 20th century; those who wish to transmit the language to others through preschool, school or adult instruction; and likewise others who wish to study a North Germanic language for the first time. Linguists may find Elfdalian interesting from the angles of comparative historical linguistics, language structure, as well as sociolinguistics and language planning.

Yair Sapir has a PhD in Scandinavian Linguistics and is Senior Lecturer of Swedish Language at Kristianstad University, Sweden.

Olof Lundgren is a doctoral student in General Linguistics at Lund University, Sweden.

Format: Hardback

Size: 234 × 156 mm

400 Pages

5 B&W line drawings

Copyright: © 2024

ISBN: 9781787355415

Publication: August 22, 2024

Series: Grammars of World and Minority Languages

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