Alternatiewe funksies van Swartafrikaans
The non-standard variety of Afrikaans, namely Black Afrikaans originated with a view to enable an African language mother tongue speaker and an Afrikaans mother tongue speaker to communicate with and understand each other. The reason for the development of this variety is typical of pidgin languages and can also be considered to be the main function of Black Afrikaans. However, occasionally Black Afrikaans is used among Afrikaans mother tongue speakers. In contrast with a pidgin in which the language between two (or more) speakers of different languages is used, Black Afrikaans, in such a case, is used between two (or more) of the same mother tongue speakers. Due to the changed nature of Black Afrikaans, the functions also change. If Black Afrikaans is imitated by Afrikaans mother tongue speakers, Black Afrikaans fulfils an alternative function that is different from the original function as indicated above. These alternative functions can still be equivalent to those of a pidgin, but also to those of a jargon. The functions of a pidgin are still present, but now appear in combination with the functions of a jargon. Within this study a qualitative approach was followed with specific focus on grounded theory. Three different instruments were applied during data collection. Questionnaires were completed by a group of 191 respondents, all of whom studied at the Potchefstroom Campus of the North West University in 2014. A group of 35 students, all enrolled for a second-year module in Afrikaans and Dutch, participated in the pilot study. Furthermore, the finalised questionnaire was completed by a group of Afrikaans mother tongue speakers registered for the compulsory module Academic Literacy. A focus group interview was conducted with five brown Afrikaans mother tongue speakers and an e-mail interview was conducted with two black Afrikaans mother tongue speakers. After having coded the data by means of the qualitative data analysis software, Atlas.ti, the codes were divided into three themes, namely the context of usage, the nature of Black Afrikaans as well as the perceptions regarding Black Afrikaans. It was found that the alternative functions of Black Afrikaans can be considered equivalent to those of a pidgin, combined with those of a jargon. Prominent functions entail: inclusivity and exclusivity, humour and the enrichment of the individual’s language repertoire. The alternative functions of Black Afrikaans are of a social nature and more than one function be fulfilled through an utterance simultaneously. The socio-historic context of South Africa brings about a large extent of sensitivity concerning the imitation of Black Afrikaans among African language mother tongue speakers as well as among Afrikaans mother tongue speakers. This sensitivity in turn results in Afrikaans mother tongue speakers preferring to use Black Afrikaans in a socially secure environment.
- Humanities