Projektet ”Ngoni – Language, culture and sociolinguistic situation” är ett tvåårigt postdok- projekt från forskningsprogrammet TASENE som är ett samarbete mellan Tanzania (COSTECH), Sverige (SIDA) och Nederländerna (NWO, Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research/WOTRO Science for Global Development).
Projektet består av två integrerade postdok. Den tanzaniska partnern är Gastor Mapunda från universitetet i Dar es Salaam.
Från svensk sida är det Tove Rosendal, SPL.
The project Ngoni - Language, culture and sociolinguistic situation is a contribution to safeguarding the Ngoni culture, by documenting, preserving and analysing its intangible cultural heritage. Its focus is especially on language, both as a resource for indigenous knowledge and as a socio-linguistic indicator of cultural vitality. Simultaneously it aims at documenting other aspects of Ngoni culture.
The project comprises three interrelated parts: A main project Language documentation and analysis of Ngoni, which is a joint project by both applicants Tove Rosendal and Gastor Mapunda, and two subprojects: The Ngoni culture - a documentation project (under the lead of Gastor Mapunda), and Language vitality and intergenerational transmission of the language Ngoni - a sociolinguistic survey (led by Tove Rosendal).
The approach of the project is documentary linguistics, while the linguistic analysis falls theoretically within the framework of contact linguistics.
As in most multilingual societies, there are power and prestige differences in the language contact situations Ngoni is involved in. The sociolinguistic study will focus primarily on school pupils’ knowledge of Ngoni, their attitudes towards the language and their language preferences. It is expected to be found that Ngoni is threatened by more prestigious lingua francas, especially Swahili. The questionnaire sociolinguistic study is complemented by a linguistic analysis of Ngoni, where interference from more prestigious lingua francas, especially Swahili, are likely to be found due to the sociolinguistic situation but also similarities in typology and differences in the two vocabularies. Established loanwords, especially content words (nouns), from languages with higher status, in addition to code-switching, are expected to be documented. The two studies of the Ngoni language will give an indication of how threatened it is. Simultaneously, the langue documentation will provide a solid source of information about Ngoni culture. Recordings of stories will be translated and published and serve as a documentation for the Ngoni themselves and for the future. Even two dictionaries (a language dictionary and a cultural dictionary) are planned as a result of the project. The research project will supplement the bilateral Sida-financed LOT project, which has produced the LOT Language Atlas.
The documentation of Ngoni culture, including language documentation, practically involves researchers and graduate students in Gothenburg, Sweden and in Dar es Salaam. Additionally, the Ngoni community will be involved in the project, which is expected to enhance the Ngoni’s interest and engagement in their culture, in order to strengthen and preserve it.
Box 200, 405 30 Göteborg
Lundgrensgatan 7, H611