A Dictionary of Cameroon Pidgin English Usage
Pronunciation, Grammar and Vocabulary
Université de Yaoundé 1
This book describes Cameroon Pidgin English, focusing on its pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary.
Pidgin English has been in active use in Cameroon for over 500 years; it started in the Slave Trade years, resisted a German ban during the German annexation period (1884-1914) and survived post-independence neglect. It took flight when it became a makeshift language used in plantations and, today, it has left the plantations for the homes and other domains of public life.
The first attempt to codify this language was made by the Catholic Church, which used it to produce a number of religious materials including the catechism. The second attempt was made by textbook writers for American Peace Corps, who have to learn the language when they arrive Cameroon as they need it to communicate with people in rural areas. The present work sets out to bring together, in a single document, the characteristic features of this language.
The work is divided into two parts. Part One comprises two chapters. The first gives background information on Cameroon, focusing on its geographic and economic situation. Then it examines the evolution of Pidgin, the place of this language in the linguistic landscape of the country, the users of this language, the domains of its use and finally the status and future prospects of this language in Cameroon. The second chapter, which describes the linguistic features of the language, outlines the research design that underlies the subsequent study of the pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary of this language.
Part Two is a dictionary which provides a lexical inventory of common present-day Pidgin English items used by spoken media practitioners to inform and entertain listeners and viewers on a daily basis, by traders in their market stalls, various technicians (mechanics, hairdressers, carpenters, etc.) in their workshops, workers in offices, children on school campuses, and some parents in their homes. In the Appendix section, a few common sayings and proverbs, samples of conversations and of spoken media texts are reproduced.
ISBN 9783862886418. Languages of the World/Dictionaries 60. 306pp. 2015.