Language in Indenture: A Sociolinguistic History of Bhojpuri-Hindi in South Africa

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9780415064040: Language in Indenture: A Sociolinguistic History of Bhojpuri-Hindi in South Africa
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The transplantation of thousands of Indian workers to South Africa under indenture between 1860 and 1911 was a political act with far-reaching consequences for their linguistic traditions. In this book, the history of one of the Indic languages, Bhojpuri, and its adaptations to its new context are traced to the point where a distinct South African Bhojpuri koine (generally known as Hindi) came into being. The roots and subsequent evolution of this language variety, as well as the events contributing to its demise, form the basis of this study.
The present status of Bhojpuri is examined from an insider's point of view, focusing on the struggle of a low-status language to survive in a predominantly English environment. Current patterns of usage by different generations are documented in the form of colloquial sentence patterns, traditional folk tales, proverbs, riddles and songs, while personal interviews draw out the changing attitudes of Bhojpuri speakers to their language.
Mesthrie's belief is that a study of a language such as Bhojpuri offers a partial history of its speakers, who have been otherwise largely silent in the history of colonial Natal.
The book is a sociolinguistic case study which offers valuable insight into the processes of dialect contact and language death and into the history and culture of the Indian community in South Africa.

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Rajend Mesthrie is a Lecturer in the Department of Linguistics, University of Cape Town.

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9781868141210: Language in Indenture: A Sociolinguistic History of Bhojpuri-Hindi in South Africa

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ISBN 10:  1868141217 ISBN 13:  9781868141210
Publisher: Wits University Press, 1991
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Rajend Mesthrie
Published by London ; New York : Routledge (1992)
ISBN 10: 041506404X ISBN 13: 9780415064040
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Book Description London ; New York : Routledge, 1992. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. xv, 325 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm. 'The transplantation of thousands of Indian workers to South Africa under indenture between 1860 and 1911 was a political act with far-reaching consequences for their linguistic traditions. In this book, the history of one of the Indic languages, Bhojpuri, and its adaptations to its new context are traced to the point where a distinct South African Bhojpuri koine (generally known as Hindi) came into being. The roots and subsequent evolution of this language variety, as well as the events contributing to its demise, form the basis of this study. The present status of Bhojpuri is examined from an insider's point of view, focusing on the struggle of a low-status language to survive in a predominantly English environment. Current patterns of usage by different generations are documented in the form of colloquial sentence patterns, traditional folk tales, proverbs, riddles and songs, while personal interviews draw out the changing attitudes of Bhojpuri speakers to their language. Mesthrie's belief is that a study of a language such as Bhojpuri offers a partial history of its speakers, who have been otherwise largely silent in the history of colonial Natal. The book is a sociolinguistic case study which offers valuable insight into the processes of dialect contact and language death and into the history and culture of the Indian community in South Africa.'. Seller Inventory # akb213

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