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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

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Title: The Tongue Between
Subtitle: Swahili & English in Tanzanian parliamentary discourse
Written By: Charles Bwenge
Series Title: LINCOM Studies in Pragmatics 19
Description:

The Tongue Between attempts to untangle a communicative puzzle pertaining
to a mixed code that has become a variety of choice within an
institutionalized diglossic policy prescribing a choice between two
officially recognized languages. Tanzanian national parliament (the Bunge)
presents a perfect communicative site for illustrating this phenomenon.
While the Bunge’s parliamentary proceedings language policy has
persistently remained ‘Swahili or English’, the actual communicative
interactions have persistently been dominated by the alternation between a
‘standard’ form and a ‘mixed’ form of Swahili, respectively referred to
here as standard Swahili (SS) and elite Swahili (ES).

Drawing on the language use as a social act[ion] perspective, the book
makes two major claims: first, ES is a distinct variety in its own right
and second, its persistent occurrence in the Bunge’s discourse is both
pragmatically and symbolically motivated – thus manifesting as a site where
the society’s linguistic culture is clearly articulated and represented
alongside demonstrating a communicative innovation and dynamics, but also
highly contested trend. In this regard, historical and synchronic analysis
is considered essential for a better understanding of the phenomenon. This
book provides insightful clues for scholars and students in language
policy, language mixing, identity construction, and political discourse in
an African setting.

Charles Bwenge is an Assistant Professor of African sociolinguistics at the
University of Florida. He earned his PhD from the University of Virginia.
His research focuses on institutional communicative interactions
particularly in political and commercial advertisement discourses in the
Swahili-speaking east African region. His most recent published articles
include “Language choice in Dar-es-Salaam’s billboards (a chapter in Fiona
Mc Laughlin, ed. 2009. The languages of urban Africa. London) and
“Codeswitching in Tanzanian parliamentary discourse: a communicative
innovation” (Issues in Political Discourse Analysis, Vol. 2(1).

Publication Year: 2010
Publisher: Lincom GmbH
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics
Sociolinguistics
Subject Language(s): English
Swahili
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9783895862366
Pages: 110
Prices: Europe EURO 53.60