Daten zum Projekt

The language of ethno-medicinal discourse in Southern Jukunoid communities of Cameroon (LEMSOC) (Fortsetzungsprojekt)

Initiative: Dokumentation bedrohter Sprachen (beendet)
Bewilligung: 11.12.2015
Laufzeit: 3 Jahre


Bezen is a marginalised and endangered language spoken in the inaccessible North West Region of Cameroon. This follow-up project aims at documenting the ethno-medicinal discourse in Bezen, e.g. the formal and informal speech practices which manifest ethnomedicinal registers and the ethnomedicinal knowledge enshrined in them. The language of traditional medicine offers an insight into the community's world view and reflects the rich repertoire of the beliefs of the community. It is therefore ideal for studying the interface of language, culture and belief systems since cultural norms and belief systems are often directly encoded in it. As for profane language, the project intends to focus on conversational exchanges between traditional doctors and soothsayers with their patients or clients. With regard to special language registers in ceremonial use, it focusses on incantations and recitations by traditional doctors during the preparation and administration of remedies, discourse in the context of soothsaying, prayers, incantations and recitations by ritual experts in contexts of communal purification and rites de passage such as child naming (baptism), marriage, circumcision and funeral. The anthropological line of the project will focus on the development of "praxeograms" which give a condensed emic overview of different categories of medical treatments, divination and soothsaying practices, rituals and blessings along side with the chronological order of indivual steps taken in these procedures, the sensorimotor activities performed and the implements used. These praxeograms will be needed as overall framework for integrating pragmalinguistically defined discursive steps identified by conversation analysis. A smaller subproject will document the ethnomedicinal practices in Akum, a neighboring Jukunoid variety.