An investigation of socio-linguistics factors that determine dominance and resistance: A case of Katanga language in the democratic republic of Congo.

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Date

2016

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University of Fort Hare

Abstract

This study aimed at investigating socio-linguistics factors that determine dominance and resistance in society. The study was based on a case of Katanga language in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Using language dominant theory (LDT), the study also examined the language factors affecting the status of the Katanga language in relation to the strategies used by its speakers to revitalise its usage. Language resistance theory (LRT) was also used in this study to establish the perceptions of the Katanga people towards their language. The study also used language endangerment theory (LET) to find out whether dominant languages such as French, English and Kiswahili were affecting the Katanga language. The study employed a qualitative research methodology, which, specifically, used a case study design. A purposeful sample of thirty (30) Congolese-Katanga people was used in this study. Data was collected through individual interviews, focus group discussions and document analysis. The study established that the Katanga language, which is a minority language, a mother tongue or a creole and a pidgin variety of Kiswahili, was not recognised officially in the language policy of the DRC and was not used in the official documents of the country. Its speakers used other languages that they perceived had advantages over the Katanga language. The study recommends the use of minority languages such as the Katanga language in both public and private sectors, which has enormous benefits for the country’s economy.

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Keywords

Luba-Katanga language, Sociolinguistics -- Congo (Democratic Republic)

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