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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: Cohesion through contrast: Discourse structure in Shaba Swahili/French conversations Add Dissertation
Author: Vincent De Rooij Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: University of Amsterdam, Institute of General Linguistics
Completed in: 1996
Linguistic Subfield(s): Discourse Analysis; Sociolinguistics;
Subject Language(s): French
Director(s): Pieter Muysken
Johannes Fabian

Abstract: The dissertation deals with the question of whether and how the use of different linguistic varieties is involved in creating and strengthening cohesion in discourse. The material analyzed consists of Shaba Swahili/French conversations recorded during fieldwork in Shaba Province, Zaire (renamed Katanga Province, DR Congo). A detailed sequential analysis of the use of French discourse markers and nouns demonstrates that the distribution of French material in Shaba Swahili/French discourse is not random, but seems to be motivated by the need for cohesion in discourse. It is argued that the French material in mixed Shaba Swahili/French language use is more salient than the Shaba Swahili material. This heightened contrastive value of French elements leads to codeswitches from Shaba Swahili to French in places where cohesion between units of discourse and lexical items is encoded.

The chapters that deal with the distribution of discourse markers and codeswitched nouns are preceded with a sketch of Shaba Swahili, a partly creolized variety of East Coast Swahili, and by a description of the sociolinguistic situation of the Zairean Copperbelt.