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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Brave New Words: Linguistic Innovation in the Political, Social and Economic Vocabulary of Amharic since 1960
Author:Tubiana, J.
Periodical:Sudan Notes and Records
Geographic term:Ethiopia
Subjects:Ethiopian-Semitic languages
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Abstract:New concepts designed to explain the new social, economic and political relationships prevailing within modern African states, and intended to promote development, freedom and welfare (among other notions), have been widely used by educated elites, westernized or sovietized. But what may the impact of such concepts be on uneducated people, who are the majority? what is actually perceived by farmers, workers, traders, soldiers, policemen, white-collar employees, housewives and schoolchildren when they read new abstract words in the newspapers or hear such words uttered on the radio or television? The author reviews some instances from the Ethiopian social context, in the national language of Ethiopia, Amharic. To this end he makes use of conceptual words appearing in a tentative dictionary which has been produced by the Ethiopian revolutionary elite, entitled 'Taramaj mäzgabä-Qalat' (Progressive Dictionary): 'Ya-sensä-hassab qalat mäfoha' (Explanation of conceptual terms).