Ileana Cortés a1, Jesús Ramírez a2, María Rivera a3, Marta Viada a4andJoan Fayer a5 a1 English MA (literature) student at the UPR in Rio Piedras a2 English professor at UPR in Arecibo and a doctoral student at the Department of English, College of Humanities, UPR in Rio Piedras a3 Doctoral TESOL student in the Faculty of Education, UPR, Rio Piedras a4 English professor at the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico, San German Campus a5 English linguistics professor at the UPR, Rio Piedras Campus
ONE OUTCOME of language contact is lexical borrowing. Borrowing in Puerto Rico (for political, economic, and social reasons) is evident in the influence English has had on Spanish, especially in lexical terms. This paper explores the impact of American English on the lexicon of Puerto Rican Spanish, specifically on vocabulary relating to food. Data were collected through participant observation in selected fast food restaurants from different regions in P.R. An analysis of the corpus provides the basis for five categories useful in understanding the influence of English on Spanish in this domain. The study indicates that English borrowings have had a tremendous influence on the Puerto Rican lexicon, and predicts that, even though Spanish will continue to be the dominant Puerto Rican language, it will continue to change under the influence of English.