TRASIANKA AND SURCHIK AS PHENOMENA OF CROSS-LIGUAL INTERFERENCE

Abstract. Cross-lingual interference in the East Slavic spatiality is a little-studied process characterized by contradictory scientific reflection and has a significant impact on speech identity, in particular, in Belarus and Ukraine. The Russian language is dominant in speech practice here. This situation gives rise to an active and influential process, the attributes of which are «trasianka» and «surzhik», respectively. The common constitutive matrix in this regard is the culturelectual variability of the involved languages.

The issues of cross-lingual identity of mixed speech with Russian and Belarusian elements are relevant not only in the context of bilingualism in Belarus, for example, where Belarusian and Russian are official languages. This problem has a much wider linguistic significance concerning the variability and globalization of all modern language practice in the context of the increasing dominance of computer-mediated communication.

There is no special «trasianka-writing» and there is no corresponding lexical and grammatical base known, in particular, to the personae speaking trasianka. It is unlikely that sporadic erroneous usage should be automatically associated with trasianka (or surzhik). For instance, trasianka has authentic linguistic features expressed phonetically, lexically, grammatically or stylistically. However, all of them would be inherent in either Russian or Belarusian. This proves that trasianka as well as surzhik are not the embodiments of a certain new language, possessing a special authenticity or identity, but are definitely the forms of speech characterized by signs of both «сreole» and «pidgin», in particular. Trasianka is a special type of language production, stable speech stereotype, reflecting the mutual systemic interference of the Russian and Belarusian languages. In the same way, surzhik reflects the mutual systemic interference of the Russian and Ukrainian languages.

In this description, the significance of cross-lingual interference in the East Slavic spatiality was verified as a permanent and complicated process. Objective and subjective criteria of relevant scientific reflection on the background and by means of discursive paradigm were discussed. The proposed conception can be the basis for a subsequent more detailed analysis.

Keywords: discourse, cross-lingual interference, East Slavic spatiality, trasianka, surzhik

Aliaksandr Barkovich

Minsk State Linguistic University Minsk, Belarus
e-mail: albark@tut.by
ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8469-8431

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