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Carson, Ben (2023) ''A Metamorphosed Language': Tracing Language Attitudes Towards Lubumbashi Swahili and French in the DRC.' SOAS Working Papers in Linguistics, 21. pp. 30-45.

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Abstract

Language attitudes in Lubumbashi, and particularly towards Lubumbashi Swahili and French, are not only indicative of positive, negative, and ambivalent feelings towards vocabulary or syntax, but of larger socio-historical and current developments, too. These attitudes, however, have not been explicitly researched. This paper seeks to begin filling that void, examining three intertwined hypotheses grounded in the language attitudes seen across Sub-Saharan Africa: (1) languages have historically been regarded ambivalently, and will continue to be held in such regard, but also that; (2) Lubumbashi Swahili has become an indispensable tool for survival in the city and that; (3) French remains an important tool for social mobility. Building off the limited scholarship on historic attitudes, my fieldwork conducted in Lubumbashi in July 2022 confirms these hypotheses, giving a fuller indication of how locals and settlers felt and continue to feel about languages as they relate to the now modernised society of Lubumbashi.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: language attitudes, Lubumbashi Swahili, Lubumbashi, Swahili Bora, French
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Languages, Cultures & Linguistics > Department of Linguistics
ISSN: 14730855
Copyright Statement: © 2023, the author.
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.25501/SOAS.00040382
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2023 15:25
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/40382

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