Hindustani contact

Language changes by evolution and contact, to use an analogy with genetics. English has acquired a huge numbers of loanwords, but what about phonology and morphology? Has it changed by immigration?

Contact under the raj to 1947 was extensive. In 2020, nearly a quarter of Birmingham’s population were born outside the UK and up to 40% of school pupils in 2013 had their origins in the Indian sub-continent. The total Asian British (including Chinese) population was just under 7% in 2011.
Mirpur in Pakistan is the origin of 60% to 70% of British Pakistanis; Pothwari/ Pahari/ Mirpuri.
Punjabis are the next most numerous group, coming from either India or Pakistan.
Other PIE languages such as Bengali and Gujarati, and non-PIE Indian languages such as Tamil.
To oversimplify, the maternal language of children of Asian families in Birmingham is Hindustani.
Neither Punjabi nor Mirpuri are official in Pakistan, which recognises Urdu and English.

Urdu, Hindi and Punjabi, the languages of North India, are closely related to most of those in Europe. William Jones, who was Welsh and became a judge in Bengal, suggested they have a common ancestor. Sanskrit is the middle ancestor of the Indian ones. The remote ancestor of most of the north Indian and Persian languages is Proto Indo-European, but the Telugu and Tamil words below are Dravidian.

Punjabi phonology has 28 consonants in total, according to language gulper, compared to English 24.
The additions are retroflex and aspirated stops, two nasals.
The noticeable shortages are the fricative /th/ and the approximant /w/; one sound for /v/ and /w/
The “Indian” accent is very familiar: curling the tongue against the palate, exhale through the nose.
Substitutions: rhoticity; retroflex tapped R; V-W merger; TH-stopping; unaspirated

; unaspirated .

Punjabi grammar has two genders, sing + pl, five noun cases, similar pronouns to English, no articles, postpositions and SOV word order.
Verbs have a root followed by suffixes for aspect, person, gender, person and tense/mood. They are derived from PIE via Sanskrit, so look closer to Latin than to English. These do not map at all well onto English. Punjabi speakers will struggle to find English forms for aspect that correspond to their nd/i suffixes, and use the English present tense. The English continuous is more familiar to their markers of tense and aspect – the verb “to be” plus a participle. So a South Asian may say “I coming here because wanting learn English”. This is a “zero past tense marker” according to Robinson, who adds these other syntax substitutions of a Punjabi speaker: inconsistent singular/ plural marker in verbs; wh-words do not change to interrogative word order; zero article.

Loanwords from India from the days of empire:

Contact with Afro Caribbean

While Indian English does not seem to have had much recent effect on Birmingham English, Drummond argues that there is a marked Multicultural Urban Black English.

pragmatic marker “you get me?” at the end of a sentence, similar to the popular innit.

Slang bare, rass, mandem; Jamaican rather than a traditional Manchester/London heritage

PRICE vowel: words such as like, might, try rhyme with /cat/
Th-stopping “thing sunds like /ting/

GOOSE vowel “food, blue, crew” like French tu.

Wanting to be black. Researcher “Is that true?”
Ryan Yeah not cos of the colour and that, like so if they hear me speaking and they’re gonna say that I think I’m black, why would I think I’m black? You get me? [laughs]

Not aware of blackness
Callum My accent’s alright. You can tell I’m a Manny head innit.
Aiden English. Just straight English.
Shannon speaks like a chav, Leah’s just hood

So UK Afro Caribbean seems to be prestigious to school-age whites, mainly boys.