The focus of this study is upon those pidgins and creoles which are English based and which have arisen since the fifteenth century. The book examines the widespread nature of the pidgin/creole phenomenon and evaluates the current definitions of the terms and the theories which have been advanced to account for their existence. The author considers the potential of pidgins and creoles as literary media and as vehicles for education. She looks at the sociological and psychological implications of using pidgins and creoles in the classroom and examines the position of American `Black English' and `London Jamaican' in the pidgin/creole continuum.

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