SPECIAL ISSUE: New perspectives on and exploration of historical contexts and sociolinguistic dynamics of language contact in the Scandinavian and Dutch Caribbean


Dear prospective contributor,

We are pleased to announce the following call for papers for a special issue of Scandinavian Studies in Language:

New perspectives on and exploration of historical contexts and sociolinguistic dynamics of language contact in the Scandinavian and Dutch Caribbean

Since the onset of European transatlantic expansion, the Caribbean has functioned as a crossroads where Europe, Africa, and the Americas intersect. Consequently, the region is marked in numerous ways by legacies of imperialism, colonization, slavery, and the intricate histories of indigenous and exogenous populations. This backdrop has had enormous consequences for the geographical distribution of languages and the linguistic diversity of the circum-Caribbean region. With respect to language contact and its outcomes, Scandinavian and Dutch Caribbean activities have held distinct positions within this overall cultural matrix. However, compared with those of other European colonial powers within the same regional context (i.e. the English/British, French, and Spanish), for the most part these remain less extensively explored, including in linguistic research.

Scandinavian Studies in Language invites scholars to contribute to a special issue that aims to delve into the historical contexts and sociolinguistic dynamics of the language landscape of the Caribbean with an emphasis on language contact phenomena associated with Scandinavian and Dutch activities and spheres of interest. This focus extends to a wide range of territories, including ones affected by Swedish colonization efforts in the Americas, the former Danish West Indies (now known as the US Virgin Islands), and the in many ways highly interconnected Dutch Caribbean, in the north and southwest of the Lesser Antilles.

The special issue places a significant emphasis on, among other aspects, the (re)new(ed) exploration of sources for Caribbean language history, contact languages (including creoles), and Scandinavian and Dutch colonial influences as well as other cultural encounters and intersections, including with Africa, the United States, and beyond. We encourage scholars to engage with themes represented by, but not limited to, the following broad keywords, in connection with languages:

  • Language contact
  • Contact languages, including creoles
  • Multilingualism
  • Sociolinguistics, including historical sociolinguistics
  • Sources for Caribbean language history
  • Literacy and schooling in creole languages
  • Religion and language
  • Languages and slave trade/slavery
  • Interpreters

Original research articles related to the specified themes are encouraged. We are also open to works that logically extend from the mentioned themes and that fit well with the overall scope of the special issue. There are no requirements on the minimal length of articles.

Manuscripts should be submitted via the online submission system: https://tidsskrift.dk/sss/about/submissions

All submissions will undergo a peer-review process. The procedure is further described on the journal’s website.

Since we operate within relatively tight deadlines (see below), we encourage potential contributors to carefully follow the journal’s guidelines for manuscript formatting, thus facilitating the work for both guest editors and the journal editors.

Important dates:

  • Announcement of intended participation: abstract of up to 250 words by 1 April 2024
  • Submission deadline: 1 August 2024
  • Notification of acceptance: 1 October 2024
  • Submission of final manuscript: 1 November
  • Publication: Ultimo December 2024

We encourage prospective contributors to contact the guest editors with any questions, expressions of interest, etc.

The guest editors are Kristoffer Friis Bøegh (kfb@cc.au.dk) and Peter Bakker (linpb@cc.au.dk), Aarhus University. Submissions can be sent to either editor.

We are committed to ensuring excellent quality in the editorial phase and to producing a special issue that will shed new light on historical contexts and sociolinguistic dynamics of language contact in the Scandinavian and Dutch Caribbean. We look forward to collaborating with you.


Kristoffer Friis Bøegh and Peter Bakker