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This work was first published in three volumes in French in 1971 (followed
by a second edition in 1976), under the auspices of the Société d’études linguistiques et
antropologiques de France (selaf). It is presented here in English in one volume.
This first book evolved because of a felt need by the authors for a methodology of
linguistic research techniques for young researchers doing fieldwork for the first time. The first
section, consisting of some basic aspects of gathering and processing data from unwritten languages,
developed from a course given by Luc Bouquiaux at the Session of African Linguistics in July 1969 at
the Faculté des Lettres of Aix-en-Provence.
Volumes two and three of the
original work consist of questionnaires, with accompanying pictures, which are exhaustive in the
coverage of terminology of linguistic categories as well as other categories such as time
expressions, currency, measures and accounts, medicine, ethnozoology, ethonbotany, kinship terms,
and many others. These areas all need investigation since, from the point of view of the authors,
“language is equally an instrument of communication and an expression of a social reality.”
It is hoped that the English translation will be found to be as indispensable a
working tool of field research to current-day researchers as the French volumes have been to
fieldworkers over the past couple of decades.
Foreword Preface Translator's Preface
Part I: Introduction to
1. General problems 2. Material aspects of the
study 3. Gathering data 4. Using the questionnaires 5. Processing the
Part II: Concepts of Linguistic Analysis
Phonology 2. Morphology 3. Word-level analysis 4. Grammatical
categories 5. Phrase-level analysis 6. The level of grammatical
functions 7. Utterance level (enoncematic, clausematic) 8.
Recapitulation 9. Bibliography
1. Instructions for the recording of linguistic
data 2. linguistic inventoly questionnaire 3. Questionnaire for an extensive
survey 4. Phonological guide 5. Morphology derivation and compounding
6. Verb phrase 7. The noun and the noun phrase 8. Sentence types 9.
1. Traditional technologies 2. Ethnobotany 3. Ethnozoology 4.
Anatomy and physiology, animals and plants 5. Instructions for collecting zoological and
botanical specimens 6. Sociological phenomena 7. Psychological
phenomena 8. Names, measurement, and time 9. Oral tradition 10.
Language contact 11. Sociolinguistic questionnaire