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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Cultural and linguistic diversity in Cross River State of Nigeria: a development asset or impediment?
Author:Iwara, A.U.
Periodical:African Notes: Bulletin of the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:plural society
language policy
Abstract:A section on the definition of 'culture' and 'language' is followed by a discussion of the relationship between culture and language. The author argues that language is inextricably bound up with culture, and that the way to promote true culture is to pay appropriate attention to the different languages of a people. Furthermore, there is a strong link between culture and development, which governments should foster in order to realize their development objectives. Focusing on Cross River State, Nigeria, the author surveys the ethnic and linguistic groups that make up its population: the Efik, the Ejagham, the Doko, the Agwagune, the Bahumono/Yakurr/Mbembe/Agoi, the Bekwara/Bette, and the Yala, and he reviews the goverment's policy towards cultural diversity. With the advent of colonial rule, the government began to force the peoples of Cross River State together, to unify them for development. However, cultural integration proved to be an impediment to communal development. The author advocates cultural and linguistic pluralism as a deliberate policy and philosophy to get the people to feel able and willing to contribute meaningfully to their own social, political and economic development. The author concludes with some recommendations to the Cross River State government and the Cultural Centre Board. Bibliogr., notes.