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Hammett, Robin William (1974) A survey of dialect variations in Rukiga. MPhil thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI: https://doi.org/10.25501/SOAS.00028647

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Abstract

Kigezi District in South-West Uganda, with its fragmented population separated by hill and swamp barriers and lacking central political institutions, was the focus of a survey of dialectal variation, taking a 1 in 3,500 sample of the population. Areas of recent immigration were excluded. An outline of phonology and grammar based on the centre of the survey area provides a frame of reference for the discussion of the local differences in phonology, morphology and lexicon under study. Phonetic variations occasionally have phonemic implications. The grammatical concord system is generally constant, but there are considerable variations in the verbal systems, both in the forms employed and in the tense oppositions. The lexicon also shows variant forms; the distribution of features often suggests a distinction between newer and older forms. Comparison with neighbouring Runyankore to the North-East and Kinyarwanda to the South-West shows that the North-East of the survey area has many Runyankore forms, but other parts have more surprising features: there is a high Runyankore content in the South-West, while the centre leans more towards Kinyarwanda. The pygmy Batwa are relatively isolated. The data illustrate well the continuity of linguistic relationship. Some isoglosses coincide, running generally in a North-West/South-East direction. A distinction of three dialects is suggested, identified, however, rather by their cores than by any clear boundaries. The linguistic findings confirm and amplify the picture of history given by oral tradition. The Bakimbiri clan in the South-West and the Bahororo in the North-East have traditions of migration from the same general area, while the Kinyarwanda forms of the central Bahimba clan suggest an earlier Banyarwanda presence in their area.

Item Type: Theses (MPhil)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.25501/SOAS.00028647
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 15:00
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/28647

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