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Structural Nativization in Postcolonial Englishes: The Complementation Profile of REMEMBER As a Case in Point


Laura García-Castro

University of Vigo, ES
About Laura
Laura García Castro has a BA in English Philology from the University of Vigo with a specialization in English Linguistics (2014). In October 2015 she started work on his PhD with funding (2015-2018) from an FPI research grant from the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, which she successfully defended on 10 December 2018. Her PhD is entitled The complementation profile of REMEMBER in Post-colonial Englishes [International doctorate] and her PhD advisors were Elena Seoane (University of Vigo) and Cristina Suárez-Gómez (University of the Balearic Islands). As from 31 December 2018 Laura is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Vigo on a competitive one-year grant funded by the State Research Agency ('Agencia Estatal de Investigación') and the European Social Fund (ref. BES-2015-071543). Laura is a member of the ViEW (Variation in English Worldwide) research project , a member of the LVTC (Language Variation and Textual Categorisation) research group and of the ELC (English Linguistics Circle) network.
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Structural nativization, that is, ‘the emergence of locally characteristic linguistic patterns and thus the genesis of a new variety of English’ (Schneider 2007: 5-6), is said to be especially prone to occur in the complementation profile of verbs (and adjectives) in Postcolonial Englishes (PCEs) (Schneider 2007: 86). However, recent research on complementation across PCEs using large corpora has focused mainly on the frequency distribution of standard patterns. This study aims to broaden the scope by conducting a corpus-based analysis using 12,000-token dataset drawn from The Corpus of Global Web-based English (GloWbE; Davies 2013) to identify possible innovative patterns in the complementation profile of remember. The varieties selected are the PCEs Indian, Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan Englishes, and British English as a reference variety. Following a holistic approach, the objective is not only to pinpoint possible instances of innovation but also explore the potential explanations of these. To do so, the complementation profile of the verb remember is considered from a diachronic perspective, mapping obsolete and regional complementation patterns and meanings (Visser 1963-1973; OED). Furthermore, the factors said to condition the linguistic evolution of PCEs are also discussed (Schneider 2007: 88-90, 99-10). The results show that there seem to be incipient traces, although very low in number, of non-standard complementation patterns in the varieties explored, both first and second language varieties. Moreover, the diachronic complementation profile of remember, plus the factors said to influence the development of PCEs, can be seen as potential explanations for most of the patterns found.


How to Cite: García-Castro, L., 2020. Structural Nativization in Postcolonial Englishes: The Complementation Profile of REMEMBER As a Case in Point. Nordic Journal of English Studies, 19(1), pp.175–204. DOI:
Published on 12 Jun 2020.
Peer Reviewed


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