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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:A Shaba Swahili life history: text and translation
Author:Blommaert, JanISNI
Year:1996
Periodical:Afrikanistische Arbeitspapiere: Schriftenreihe des Kölner Instituts für Afrikanistik
Issue:47
Pages:31-62
Language:English
Geographic term:Congo (Democratic Republic of)
Subjects:Swahili language
autobiography
Abstract:This paper presents an edited version of a handwritten text in Shaba Swahili and French, accompanied by an English translation. The original text was written by an ex-houseboy from Shaba, Zaire, and sent to his former employer in Belgium. It provides an account of his life, with emphasis on the period after his Belgian employers left Zaire in 1973. It documents the conditions of hardship in the life of a semi-educated Zairian and describes the migrations he has to undertake in order to find the means to support his family. The text arrived in Belgium in April 1995 and was presumably written in various versions between 1994 and early 1995. Shaba Swahili is the variety of Swahili spoken in the Zairian provinces of Shaba and Kasai. The last parts of the text are written in French. The present author provides information on the structure of the text, its chronology and itinerary, and the edited version. Bibliogr., notes.
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