Eastern Maroon Creole

The term Eastern Maroon Creole or Nenge(e) is a cover term for three very closely related and mutually intelligible conservative Creole varieties spoken by the descendants of three Maroon groups (Aluku, Ndyuka or Okanisi, Pamaka) in Suriname and French Guiana. Speakers of these languages predominantly reside in rural and urban centres of the two countries, but also in Europe (Netherlands, France). Their speaker numbers are not fully known. Conservative counts estimate that they number roughly between 65.000 and 80.000 speakers in total. These communities and languages emerged throughout the 18th century as a result of their founders’ flight from the plantations of Suriname. These languages are still widely used as home and community languages and in recent years have made some head way in the public sphere in both countries. They used to be very much stigmatized but attitudes towards them have significantly improved due to various social changes in the region.

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