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Title: Language, discourse and survival strategies: The case of cross-border traders in Southern Africa
Contributor(s): Masuku, Jesta Mutinda (author); Ndhlovu, Finex  (supervisor)orcid ; Ellis, Elizabeth M  (supervisor)orcid 
Conferred Date: 2017
Copyright Date: 2016
Thesis Restriction Date until: Access restricted until 2019-04-09
Open Access: No
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Abstract: This thesis is a critical exposition of communication strategies employed by cross-border traders (CBTs) during their trade activities at selected border sites in Southern Africa. The study spotlights the innovative ways by which CBTs circumvent nationally imposed language policies and practices that are a barrier to their communication during trade and, consequently, to their survival in the trade arena. Because modernist standard language ideological frameworks currently dominate the field of linguistic conceptualization and language definition, language practices of transient communities such as cross-border traders remain under-theorized and least appreciated. This thesis, therefore, challenges mainstream conceptualizations of language and their role in shaping simplistic ideas on language. The singular most important innovation of the thesis lies in that it moves away from abstracted notions of language and emphasizes those grounded elements of language that were extrapolated from real language settings and traceable actions of CBTs. Furthermore, the study contributes new theoretical insights on language redefinition and reconceptualization by drawing on observable on-site language practices of cross-border traders at selected Southern African borders and borderlands. What is it that enables the economic trade activities of these 'informal' cross-border traders to thrive in the face of linguistic diversity and nation-state controls? To address this question, the study used data from on-site observable language practices of CBTs as basis for suggesting an alternative philosophy of language and communication. In searching for alternative linguistic trajectories, a revisionist decoloniality epistemology was adopted in framing the theoretical underpinnings of the study. The new alternative linguistic trajectories suggested in the study, point to the need for the redefinition and re-conceptualization of what we mean by language.
Publication Type: Thesis Doctoral
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 200406 Language in Time and Space (incl Historical Linguistics, Dialectology)
200405 Language in Culture and Society (Sociolinguistics)
200401 Applied Linguistics and Educational Linguistics
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 470406 Historical, comparative and typological linguistics
470411 Sociolinguistics
470401 Applied linguistics and educational linguistics
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society
970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture
970114 Expanding Knowledge in Economics
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 280114 Expanding knowledge in Indigenous studies
Rights Statement: Copyright 2016 - Jesta Mutinda Masuku
Open Access Embargo: 2019-04-09
HERDC Category Description: T2 Thesis - Doctorate by Research
Appears in Collections:School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
School of Psychology
Thesis Doctoral

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