Code mixing in Tuatschin


Tuatschin is a dialectal variety of Sursilvan, mostly spoken in the Val Tujetsch in the canton of Grisons. As the other Romansh dialect varieties, Tuatschin is strongly affected by an intensive and long-term language contact situation with both the Swiss German and Standard German. The German as well as the Sursilvan standard variety long ago became a stand part of the Tuatschin everyday language, whereat different language-mixing mechanisms seem to fulfil different socio- and psycholinguistic functions. This borrowing process provides a continuum of integrated, semi-integrated and spontaneous, not integrated switches into other languages.

In collaboration with the SNSF project “The morphosyntax of agreement in Tuatschin: acquisition and contact” and with further financial support from the Institut für Kulturforschung Graubünden (ikg), the aim of this project is to analyse and compare different forms and functions of code-mixing in a language acquisition corpus and in an adult corpus of Tuatschin. In order to do so, a key task in a first phase will be to find a statistical method to describe the speaker norm illustrating the possible degree of speaker-individual integration of different words in different contexts. As a result, the mixing patterns in different sociolinguistic and grammatical contexts can be found and compared, which provides new insights in Romansh language change.

Project leadership

Claudia Cathomas

In collaboration with the

SNSF project "The morphosyntax of agreement in Tuatschin: acquisition and contact"


URPP Language and Space and Institut für Kulturforschung Graubünden