Multilingualism & nation Building by Gerda Mansour

By Gerda Mansour

This ebook is interdisciplinary, drawing at the sociology and politics of language, African linguistics, African background and social heritage generally. It specializes in a number of the matters concerning multilingualism in West Africa, yet can also be suitable to multilingual occasions in 3rd international international locations normally. even if the e-book is aimed toward the trained basic reader, it may even be of curiosity to language experts and scholars of 3rd international politics.

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This discrepancy between the borders of the standard language, which coincide with political borders, and the actual linguistic continuity of the dialects across the German-Dutch and German-Danish borders is the subject of German dialectology. 2. cf. Bird (1970) with respect to Mande languages, and Djite (1988a) with respect to the classification and labelling of the Kru languages and dialects of the Ivory Coast. 3. cf. Ohannessian & Kashoki (1978) on the languages of Zambia and Ladefoged, Glick & Criper (1972) on Uganda.

The reasons why, in practice, language shift and assimilation has generally been a one-way process in favour of Manding has to be sought in the historical power relations created by the Mali empire, which are still capable of lending social and linguistic prestige to Manding. The secondary symbolic function of language: that of being a tool in the struggle for cohesion, had its origins in the new social organisation of the Mali empire. The ascendance of one mansa over his peers was precipitated by a military crisis: the neighbouring Manding mansas accepted Sunjata's leadership in what is described as a war of liberation against a commonly perceived oppressor.

Rulers of these provinces were invested by the king with their authority and given a Manding title. Only three of these were rewarded for their loyalty to Sunjata with the royal title 'mansa'. Others, such as the main trading centres along the southern edge of the Sahara (Walata, Gao, Timbuktoo and Tadmekka) were ruled by vassals with the Manding title 'farba' (which was translated into Arabic by 'naa'ib', meaning deputy). The various remarks made by Ibn Battuta concerning language use in these towns suggest that some of the officials were of Manding origin, and that it was common to address the people through an interpreter.

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