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Caney, John Charles (1982) The Modernisation of Somali Vocabulary, With Particular Reference to the Period From 1972 to the Present. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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The aim of this thesis is to examine the lexical modernisation of the Somali language, a subject which provides an excellent opportunity to study at first hand the process of accelerated vocabulary expansion. While vocabulary expansion in languages with a long-established written tradition has evolved gradually, allowing time and preference to determine ultimately the acceptance of additions to vocabulary, Somalia has been denied this luxury. Although some vocabulary expansion took place on a limited and informal scale with the introduction in 1943 of radio broadcasts in the Somali language, it was not until 1972 that an official orthography was established - prior to which date no generally accepted written form had existed - and a co-ordinated government programme of vocabulary expansion initiated. It is this new Somali vocabulary which forms the basis of the present study. This thesis seeks to show how the universal principles of vocabulary expansion relate to the specific manifestation in Somali by considering a) the limited number of methods available, with examples taken from a variety of languages b) the speed with which such an expansion can be achieved, since only vocabulary needs to be substantially expanded given that the logical framework of all languages is essentially identical and capable of coping with modem thought c) the freedom of choice within the limitation of methods, and the way in which it has been exercised in Somali. To this end, an examination has been made of the specific methods of vocabulary expansion adopted by the Somali language planners in the creation of a modem vocabulary and incorporated within this examination is a detailed analysis of selected modem Somali vocabulary drawn from available sources, including the Somali press, school text-books and selected extracts from Somali radio broadcasts.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:17

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