Secret Manipulations is the first comprehensive study of African register
variation, polylectality, and derived languages. Focusing on a specific form of
language change-deliberate manipulations of a language by its speakers-it
provides a new approach to local language ideologies and concepts of grammar
and metalinguistic knowledge.
Anne Storch concentrates on case studies from Nigeria, Uganda, Sudan, the
African diaspora, and 16th century Europe. In these cases, language
manipulation varies with social and cultural contexts, and is almost always done
in secret. At the same time, this manipulation can be an act of subversion and
an expression of power, and it is often central to the construction of social
norms, as it constructs oppositions and gives marginalized people a chance to
articulate themselves. This volume illustrates how manipulated languages are
constructed, how they are used, and how they wield power.