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Book Chapter

Prehistoric interaction between Transeurasian and non-Transeurasian speakers


Robbeets,  Martine       
Archaeolinguistic Research Group, Department of Archaeology, Max Planck Institute of Geoanthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Robbeets, M. (2023). Prehistoric interaction between Transeurasian and non-Transeurasian speakers. In M. Hudson, & M. Robbeets (Eds.), Agropastoralism and languages across Eurasia: expansion, exchange, environment (pp. 25-40). Oxford: BAR Publishing.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000D-A8D4-6
The Transeurasian family consists of Turkic, Mongolic, Tungusic, Koreanic and Japonic daughter branches. Recent research suggests that the earliest dispersals of this family in the Neolithic can be explained by the Farming / Language Dispersal Hypothesis. However, this hypothesis by itself cannot explain later Transeurasian dispersal from the Bronze Age onwards. Here I compare three different cases of interaction between Transeurasian and non-Transeurasian speakers in the Late Neolithic and Bronze Age, whereby Transeurasian farmers meet Amuric hunter-gatherer-Fisherman, interact with Sine-Tibetan farmers or exchange of genetic admixture, socio-economic interaction and linguistic outcome. The results indicate that contact with speech communities with economically less productive strategies, such as between farmers and hunter-gahterers, leads to language shift and the dispersal of dominant language, while interaction between populations with comparably productive economies, such as between farmer s and farmers or pastoralists stimulates linguistic borrowing.