Chapter published in:Cultural-Linguistic Explorations into Spirituality, Emotionality, and Society
Edited by Hans-Georg Wolf, Denisa Latić and Anna Finzel
[Cognitive Linguistic Studies in Cultural Contexts 14] 2021
► pp. 24–39
Lexical evidence for ancestral communication in Black South African English
The present chapter derives from a comprehensive project on culture-specific conceptualizations in Black South African English. It carries out a lexico-semantic analysis of conceptualizations of ancestral communication in Black South African English and is based on a 66,634-word corpus of 424 unedited classifieds published in 48 consecutive editions of the South African Daily Sun newspaper as well as on a 54,000-word corpus of ethnographic interviews with meso-/acrolectal Pedi, Sotho, Swati, Tswana, Xhosa and Zulu L1-speakers of English. The chapter addresses the central role of the ancestors in traditional and retraditionalized Black South African communities and the importance of intact communicative bonds between the physical and the spiritual parts of the community. In addition, the analysis produces lexico-semantic evidence for the processes of nativization and contextualizations in Black South African English by examining the ritualized communicative act of throwing bones as conducted by diviner-diagnosticians in mediated ancestral communication. Finally, the chapter proposes a model representation of the vertical organization of ancestral communication schemas in Black South African English. The present chapter communicates with Peters (2021), which provides a more detailed account of the cultural-conceptual background of witchcraft and traditional healing as represented in Black South African English herbalist classifieds.
Keywords: Cognitive Sociolinguistics, newspaper corpora, ethnographic interviews, ritualized communicative acts, ancestors, traditional healers, mediation
Published online: 08 September 2021
Chabal, P., & Daloz, J. P.
Doke, C. M., & Vilakazi, B. W.
Finzel, A., & Wolf, H.-G.
Lakoff, G., & Johnson, M.
Leech, G., & Fallon, R.
Peters, A., & Coetzee-Van Rooy, S.
Peters, A., & Polzenhagen, F.
Polzenhagen, F., & Frey, S.
Schneider, E. W.
Steen, G. J., Dorst, A. G., Herrmann, J. B., Kaal, A. A., & Krennmayr, T.
Tambiah, S. J.
von Kapff, U.