This study of literary themes, linguistic practice and cultural traditions analyzes the oral traditions of Indo-Portugese creole verse, as a synthesis from European, African and Asian sources. This musical, dramatic and textual syncretism defines tradition within the group and maintains the identity of the creole community. References are primarily to Indian and Sri Lankan materials collected in the late nineteenth century and to data in the H. Nevill collection, an extensive manuscript of Sri Lankan Creole texts from the 1870s or 1880s, housed in the British Museum. The importance of these texts is linguistic, anthropological and sociological. They are persistent in their ability to give definition to creole culture, surviving in South Asia from the seventeenth century to the present.
1. Preface; 2. Discovering South Asian Portuguese; 3. 1. Portuguese Language and Culture in Sri Lanka; 4. 2. Portuguese Creoles on the West Coast of India; 5. 3. The Nevill Manuscript; 6. 4. Unity of Indo-Portuguese Creole Verse in the Oral Tradition; 7. 5. Portuguese Creole Folklore; 8. 6. Kaffirs and Kaferingha: Music and Verse Out of Africa; 9. 7. Valentine and Orson: A European Folk Narrative in Sri Lankan Portuguese; 10. 8. Bela Infanta: Ballad Fragments in Creole Verse; 11. 9. Cantha Sen Vargonya: Indo-Portuguese Creole Verse; 12. Bibliography; 13. Appendix