SURESH RAMPHUL

In a situation of multilingualism, languages tend to influence each other. Due to the close contact between Kreol morisien and English language in Mauritius, many English words have found their way into the former. Using English words mixed with Kreol morisien is a matter of routine. The influence of one language on another can be mutual or non-mutual. However, we don’t see many words from Kreol morisien adopted into the English language. The influence can therefore be said to be one-sided. Hereunder is a compilation of English words that have crept into Kreol morisien. They’re examples I’ve heard on the radio or come across in newspapers or in everyday conversations. I thought it might be interesting to share them with my readers.

“Avek MSM ena enn feel-good factor dan pei”, “pou mwa li obvious ki nou pe eli isi”, “eleksion bizin free and fair”, “bizin amelior kalite lavi tou dimounn irrespective zot kouler”, “mo fer konfians dan mo leader”, “kandida dir li satisfe response lipe gagne”, “My God! Pa ti atann mo pou eli”, “tou dimounn viv bien dan sa vilaz-la, mo happy”, “promes elektoral se enn bribe”, “sa eleksion-la li pou enn three-cornered fight”, “kandida pe gagn boukou feedback pozitif”, “bizin sanz mindset”, “MMM is back”, “fer canvassing dan lakour lekol”, “enn hardcore MSM”, “fer enn dernie forcing”, “bizin donn travayer incentives”, “ena boukou proze dan pipeline”, “transform Moris an enn hub rezional”, “kisannla campaign manager ?”, “minis finn zwenn so bann senior officers”, “ki mood lor terin?”, “komie vot ou pe expect pou gagne ?”, “li kapav vinn Chairman dan enn board”, “zis minis ki pas aware ki vilaz-la malprop”.

“Li enn vre gentleman”, “mo garson supervisor”, “Call mwa lor sa nimero-la”, “bizin met enn case lapolis”, “Chips-la top”, “li enn hardworker”, “enn dokiman genuine”, “povrete pa kapav eradicate dan de zour”, “mo al lamer pou relax”, “papie Maths li compulsory”, “se enn eyesore”, “fim-la finn ariv lor so climax”, “to gagn liv-la nimport ki bookshop”, “okay, mo pou chek sa pou twa”, “mwa mo manz zis veg”, “travay dapre syllabus”, “anplwayer kapav hire and fire”, “to ena past exam paper kot twa ?”, “telefon mwa kan to oule, feel free », “fer to homework”, “mo ena classwork pou fer”, “sorry, mo pa ti kone”, “se enn hardship case”, “sa dokiman-la li confidential”, “mo pou aste enn microwave”, “pwason-la ankor dan fridge”, “pa tann narye lor sa lide work from home la”, “bizin empower bann madam”, “met enn travayer deor li unfair”.

« li enn self-made man », “aste enn loto duty free”, “pa pou ena cover-up dan sa zafer-la”, “dapre roster mo travay dimin”, “lipe fer so comeback”, “Liverpool pe zwe home”, “tou bann bel bel job pou zot”, “se enn vre challenge”, “mo challenger direk se…”, “lapolis kapav aret twa pou enn routine check”, “zanfan-la timid, li pa tro forthcoming”, “pou le moman, tou under control”, “mo ena enn good news pou twa”, “aste enn burger”, “lapolis inn donn twa enn warning?”, “ki finn arive dan workshop?”, “li dan move mood zordi”, “lapolis bizin enquire kouma finn ariv sa”, “met dokiman-la dan enn file”, “li finn arete pou conspiracy”, “bizin respecte law and order”, “finn aret de dimounn pou rogue and vagabond”, “pa fer dumping isi”, “sa zelev-la li enn asset pou nou kolez”, “madam-la travay cleaner “, “sa prof-la bien dedicated dan so travay”, “pe propoz Rs700 compensation salarial across the board”. The commonly-used word “bistop” is derived from “bus stop”.
“mo pou al job fair dimin”, “dan lavi bizin move on”, “dimounn pe viv dan temporary shelter”, “zordi so moral down”, “li enn diehard PTr”, “li ena enn bon background sosial”, “to pa fit for duty”, “to finn gagn to license?”, “sa match-la pe pas live lor tv”, “akter-la pe fer shooting Caudan”, “mo ti kontan gagn to advice”, “li finn ale avek enn golden handshake”, “sa smartphone-la ena so camera tou ladan”, “Divali Nite-la ti interesan?”, “case-la finn dismiss dan lakour”, “pa kapav fer narye pou ou, business se business”, “lipe poz tiles dan lakaz”, “to bizin apply pou enn job”, “marker pe ekrir pal”, “kot duster-la?”, “mo ena sa liv-la so hardcover, so paperback osi”, “so gate kouler marron”.
Normally, we would say “liv-la ennuyan” (or liv-la bom, liv-la kouyonad, liv-la mari dan bez) but I’ve often heard students saying “liv-la boring”. Maybe the English word translates their state of mind in a better way. Similarly, we would say “papie dilo” but “bill CWA to finn peye?” is also common. It is either because the English word comes easy or because technical words are difficult to avoid. We use “pran enn takeaway pou mwa” or football, volleyball, handball, tennis, golf etc because we do not have an alternative for them. On the other hand, we do have a French or Kreol word for “airport” (aeroport), yet I’ve rarely heard any bus-traveller using the French or Kreol version when paying the fare; it’s almost always the English version whatever social class he or she may belong to. Someone can say “Finn ena enn vol me mo pena narye pou fer ladan” but sometimes there can be an unconscious shift to English as in “Finn ena enn vol me mo pa involve ladan” to help emphasize the idea of innocence.
“Mo swet zot tou davans enn Happy New Year”.