Edited By Rudolf Muhr and Dawn Marley
Functional dominance in non-dominant varieties of Cameroon English Pronunciation
Kelen Ernesta Fonyuy*
(University of Bamenda, Bambili, Cameroon)firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: In British ex colonies such as Cameroon, India, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Australia, etc., English has either official or co-official language status, but within this backdrop each ex colony has developed a distinctive variety of English alongside other local varieties for diverse pragmatic purposes. In this paper, a sociolinguistic approach is used to analyse aspects of phonetics and phonology in three non-dominant varieties (NDVs) of Cameroon English (CamE) viz: CamE ethnolects, Cameroon British or American English (CamBrE/CamAmE), and Cameroon francophone English (CamFranE), which elucidate the functional authority in non-dominant varieties of Cameroon English pronunciation. Findings prove that NDVs are prominent facets of communication in contemporary culture and society even without their dominant presence in the norms of these same sociolinguistic ecologies. Their use by affiliates highlights the functional dominance of these varieties within communities of users irrespective of the variety category. In this study, the functional status of NDVs has generated the functional non-normative hypothesis, postulating that NDVs may not be normative, but they are pragmatically functional.
Cameroon is a country of extraordinary linguistic complexity, considering that it has a population of just over 22 million, but with as many as 280 indigenous languages and over 200 ethnic groups (see www.ethnologue.com/country/cm). It has two exogenous languages, English and French, as co-official languages of education and administration; a Cameroon Pidgin English (CPE); and a ← 289 | 290 → Camfranglais (a Cameroon blend of English,...
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