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Linguistic and Cultural Tenets in Africa: The Quest for Peace

Journal: International Journal of Arts and Social Science (Vol.2, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 08-54

Keywords : language; culture; history; identity; peace; Africa;

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Using a theoretical concept by combining linguistic relativity and linguistic determinism – the structure of our language; a set of specific selected words influence man's perception of the world and language use determines thought and action, data was collected and analysed qualitatively. The aim of the paper is to illustrate the pertinence of culture in language use and actions with emphasis to explore the contextual symbolic meanings of specific words in Africa nation states' quest for peace. Specifically, in this paper we examine carefully selected and uttered lexis and their significant meanings in Cameroon, South Africa and Uganda. The results of the study confirmed that words have unique significance in relation to the culture, history and identity of a particular African people. Words used in the Cameroon context, ‘all is well', are mostly words of hope and assurance in a war-free nation. The interpretation of some words, ‘Rhodes must fall', generate disputes and lead to violent actions in the search for peaceful and prosperous co-existence in an apartheid ridden country like South Africa. Certain words of greetings, ‘you still exist', though a total recall of pain and torture in a period of turbulence and massacre in Uganda, portray gratitude and delightedness among citizens.

Last modified: 2023-02-03 16:20:40