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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:South Sudanese Arabic and the negotiation of the local State, c. 1840-2011
Author:Leonardi, CherryISNI
Periodical:The Journal of African History (ISSN 0021-8537)
Geographic term:South Sudan
Subjects:Arabic language
Creole languages
language history
language usage
State formation
External link:https://doi.org/10.1017/S0021853713000741
Abstract:This article explores the history of the creole South Sudanese Arabic language from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day. It analyses the historical evidence of language use in the light of insights drawn from linguistic studies of creolisation to argue that South Sudanese Arabic became an innovative and necessary means of communication among multiple actors within new fields of interaction. The article argues that these fields of interaction were both the product and the arena of local State formation. Rather than marking the boundary of the State, the spread of this creole language indicates the enlarging arenas of participation in the local State. The development and use of South Sudanese Arabic as an unofficial lingua franca of local government, trade, and urbanisation demonstrates that communication and negotiation among local actors has been central to the long-term processes of State formation in South Sudan. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]