This volume presents a careful selection of fifteen articles presented at the SPCL meetings in Atlanta, Boston and Hawai'i in 2003 and 2004. The contributions reflect – from various perspectives and using different types of data – on the interplay between structure and variation in contact languages, both synchronically and diachronically. The contributors consider a wide range of languages, including Surinamese creoles, Chinook Jargon, Yiddish, AAVE, Haitian Creole, Afro-Hispanic and Afro-Portuguese varieties, Nigerian Pidgin, Sri Lankan Malay, Papiamentu, and Bahamian Creole English. A need to question and test existing claims regarding pidginization/creolization is evident in all contributions, and the authors provide analyses for a variety of grammatical structures: VO-ordering and affixation, agglutination, negation, TMAs, plural marking, the copula, and serial verb constructions. The volume provides ample evidence for the observation that pidgin/creole studies is today a mature subfield of linguistics which is making important contributions to general linguistic theory.