Because constant code-switching between so many languages (Creole, French, English and even Hindi, Bhojpuri etc.) is not confusing enough, Mauritians actually even share speech patterns with our Star Wars friend, Yoda!
Yeah, you heard that right. The subtle difference, however, lies in the fact that the weird word positioning of Yoda makes him sound wiser, ours – well, not so much.
As you (supposedly) know, the English language uses the ‘Subject-Verb-Object’ sentence structure – ex. I love Roti. In Yoda language that would become Roti I love.
Here are some ways in which Mauritians tend to sound like Yoda:
Mauritian Yoda speech is most commonly used in sarcasm in two ways;
a) ‘It’s good this joke.’
(Subject- Verb – Complement – Repeated Subject)
b) ‘Ten shits I give.’
(Object – Subject – Verb.) A.k.a Yoda for ‘I couldn’t care less.‘
‘It changed my life this grammar lesson.’
2. The Vague Subject
Bus driver: ‘It’s kaming anader (bus).’
For those of you who are perplexed, that is Yoda for ‘Another bus is coming’.
‘Full up. It’s kaming anader’
3. Me, Myself and I
Like the French (or because of them!?), we sometimes repeat the subject to emphasize difference.
Yeshna: ‘How many times per week do you go to the gym?’
Vishna: ‘Me, I go once a month.’
While not technically wrong, this is just not good English…
4. Anglais Potisse
- Christie, I’m finalment headin’ bak to lile maurice
Christie: you mean Mauritius…Why d’you gotta speak anglais potisse, y can’t u just speak plain creole???
5. The murder of an international language… #ZE
In case you thought Mauritians are embracing the LGBTQ community and using “Ze” as a gender neutral pronoun…well, you’re wrong. That’s just how we talk dans nou ti zil, to kompren?
Yoda: You like Ze new song of Justin Bieber, zat one, you know, about ze ting, you know?
Yan: Maann, what the hell are you saying ?
And in case you’re horrified to have just found out you’ve been speaking like a little green creature all this time, remind yourself that Shakespeare himself did so too; ‘Something wicked this way comes‘.