Some linguistic variations of kaonde: A dialectological study

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Mambwe, Kelvin
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This study investigated some linguistic variations of three Kaonde dialects spoken in Northwestern and Central provinces of Zambia. The dialects included the standard Kaonde, Lubango-Kaonde and Mumbwa Kaonde. The exercise was carried out in order to establish the variation of the dialectal differences in terms of morphological, syntactic, phonological and lexical parameters.The data were collected through the use of five informants, three from the Mumbwa dialect and two from the Lubango dialect. Each of the participants was given lists of words and sentences in English and was asked to provide the equivalents in a given dialect. Data from the standard dialect were provided through the researcher's intuition being a first language speaker of Kaonde and verified by two other speakers of Kaonde as first language. The data were then recorded on tape and later transcribed. The note book was used to record words and sentences captured by observation. Thereafter data analysis of all the data collected was conducted in line with the objectives of the study. The findings were analysed and interpreted according to the levels of linguistic analysis applied in the study Among the major findings of the study was that the three Kaonde dialects studied manifested dialectal variations at the various levels of linguistic analysis and that the Mumbwa dialect displayed more variations in relation to the other dialects investigated. This was attributed to the long distance between the Mumbwa dialect and the other two. Divergence was said to have played a crucial role in exacerbating the linguistic differences among them. On the other hand, the standard and Lubango-Solwezi dialects were found to display minimal linguistic variations between them because of their geographical closeness and therefore convergence was found to have played a role in reducing the linguistic variations between the two dialects. The study also concluded that there were more lexical differences exhibited among the dialects, followed by syntactic and phonological variations. Morphological variations were found to be few among the three dialects. This implied that the three dialects shared more similarities in terms of their morphological structure. One of the major recommendations made was that a large scale study, beyond the scope of the current one on dialectology of the Kaonde language be carried out in order to include other dialects from far-flung areas including the Congo so that the conclusions to be made would be based on all forms of the Kaonde language.
Languages-Zambia , Linguistic-Zambia