Sociolinguistic survey of the Chakali language area

Statement of Responsibility:
Tompkins, Barbara, Deborah Hatfield and Angela Kluge

A language survey was conducted in 1974 among the Chakali language community (Gur language family) of Ghana's Upper West Region, in order to assess the level of Wali comprehension among Chakali speakers (Reimer and Blass 1975). Wali comprehension was found to be high. In 1995 a follow-up survey was conducted in order to examine the present day sociolinguistic situation. This paper presents the findings from this recent study.

Through the use of sociolinguistic questionnaires administered to community leaders as well as to individuals, the survey researchers collected data concerning reported levels of multilingualism, the second language learning environment, language use in various domains, language attitudes toward both written and oral forms of Chakali and Wali, and education and literacy levels in four Chakali communities. Special attention was given to indicators of possible language shift.

The results are given for each of the above mentioned categories as well as their implications for Chakali language development. Overall, the results show high levels of reported bilingualism and use of Wali. However, there were no indicators of imminent language shift.

37 pages
Language surveys
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