Universität zu Köln

New Roles for African Languages with the New Electronic Media

Pasch, Helma (2005) New Roles for African Languages with the New Electronic Media.

Download (151Kb) | Preview


    Mass communication is not new in Africa. Until the mid-20th century aural surrogate languages were used to convey messages which would immediately reach many listeners and which could even be transmitted when the telephone line was interrupted, in particular in Western and Central Africa. The comprehension of these languages depended on the mastership of the spoken language and basically all speakers could understand messages transferred by drum, gong or whistle. With the introduction of writing and printed literature a division emerged according to which certain types of written/printed information were restricted to non-African languages or available also in African languages. While basically all types of literature can be printed or imported in English or French, the production (or import) of literature in African languages is basically restricted to religious texts and to fiction, but hardly any non-fiction. Letter-writing to family members overseas was for a long time the only type of written communication carried out � if at all � in African languages. The new media bring the chances of significant changes in the choice of languages for written information. While making books is expensive, the production of websites is fairly cheap. This offers the chance to produce written texts in African languages which formerly could not be published for economy reasons.

    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
    Translated abstract:
    Massenkommunikation ist kein neues Phönomen in Afrika. Bis zum 20. Jahrhundert dienten u.a. Trommelsprachen zu diesem Zweck. Sie basierten auf den Strukturen der mündlich gesprochenen lokalen Sprachen. Mit der Einführung von Schrift und gedruckten Medien erfolgte eine Teilung der Sprachen, in denen gedruckte Texte veröffentlicht wurden, und solchen, auf die das nicht zutraf. Wichtige Informationen wurden vorwiegend in den europäischen Sprachen veröffentlicht. Mit dem Zugang zum Internet können aufgrund der geringen Kosten nun auch afrikanische Sprachen als Medien genutzt werden.German
    Pasch, Helmaama14@uni-koeln.de
    URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-31798
    Subjects: Other languages
    Uncontrolled Keywords:
    Internet, Afrika, Hausa, Swahili, SomaliGerman
    www, online publicationsEnglish
    Faculty: Philosophische Fakultät
    Divisions: Philosophische Fakultät > Institut für Afrikanistik und Ägyptologie
    Language: English
    Date: 2005
    Date Type: Completion
    Full Text Status: Public
    Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2011 12:40:34
    URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/3179

    Actions (login required)

    View Item