Rural Linguistic and Cultural Diversity
Although multilingualism is the norm in the day-to-day lives of most sub-Saharan Africans, multilingualism in settings outside of cities has so far been under-explored. This gap is striking when considering that in many parts of Africa, individual multilingualism was widespread long before the colonial period and centuries before the continent experienced large-scale urbanization. The edited collection African Multilingualisms fills this gap by presenting results from recent and ongoing research based on fieldwork in rural African environments as well as environments characterized by contact between urban and rural communities of speakers. The contributors—mostly Africans themselves, including a number of emerging scholars—present findings that both complement and critique current scholarship on African multilingualism. In addition, new methods and tools are introduced for the study of multilingualism in rural settings, alongside illustrations of the kinds of results that they yield. African Multilingualisms reveals an impressive diversity in the features of local language ideologies, multilingual behaviors, and the relationship between language and identity.