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Towards the Conceptualization of the Sphere of Interpersonal Relations in Amharic - ebook/pdf
Towards the Conceptualization of the Sphere of Interpersonal Relations in Amharic - ebook/pdf
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Wydawca: Wydawnictwa Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego Język publikacji: Angielski
ISBN: 978-83-235-2850-0 Data wydania:
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Kategoria: ebooki >> naukowe i akademickie >> literaturoznawstwo, językoznawstwo
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Praca sytuuje się w językoznawczych nurtach socjolingwistyki i pragmatyki językowej i dotyczy grzecznościowych wyrażeń językowych oraz ich uwarunkowań kulturowych, pokazanych na przykładzie języka amharskiego. Kontekst kulturowy, wyznaczający poprawność pragmatyczną struktur językowych, odnosi się do wielowiekowych tradycji Cesarstwa Etiopskiego, mocno zakorzenionego chrześcijaństwa, ale też zmian znaczonych epoką socjalizmu i przemian demokratycznych, z pozostającą w tle, ale przecież istotną, rzeczywistością afrykańską.

Autorka kładzie nacisk na zmiany językowe, które są śladem zmian w życiu społecznym, politycznym i kulturowym, analizując je głównie pod kątem funkcji i dystrybucji form adresu. Tzw. adresatywy postrzega jako kombinację środków leksykalnych i gramatycznych i pokazuje zmiany, jakie zachodzą w ich stosowaniu w wyniku przekształceń historycznych w społeczeństwie etiopskim.
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Ewa Wołk works in the Department of African Languages and Cultures at Warsaw University’s Faculty of Oriental Studies. In 2003, she received her PhD in the humanities, specialising in linguistics. Her main area of research, conducted in Ethiopia, at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, and at the Asien-Africa Institut, Hamburg University, is the socio-linguistic aspects of Amharic, the working language of Ethiopia. At present she is researching the social identity of the people of a multi-ethnic Ethiopia, as well as contemporary Ethiopian literature, drama and film. She has published several articles on the social, cultural and linguistic characteristics of Ethiopia, and lectures on Amharic and its literature at the University of Warsaw. The work belongs to the field of sociolinguistics and linguistic pragmatics, and concerns Amharic honorific expressions and their cultural constraints. The cultural context which determines the pragmatic accuracy of the grammatical structures is set in the traditions of the Ethiopian Empire, that go back many centuries and are deeply rooted in Christianity. But it also comprises changes brought about by communism and later democratic transformations, all against the background of the no less important African reality. The author pays particular attention to linguistic changes that mark transformations in social, political and cultural life, analysing them through the function and distribution of forms of address. She perceives forms of address as a combination of lexical and grammatical means, showing the changes in the way they are used as a result of the historical transformations taking place in Ethiopian society. [From the review by Prof. Nina Pawlak, University of Warsaw] The book adds to our knowledge of contemporary Ethiopia: the transformations the country went through in the 20th century, the moral aura prevailing there at present and the values that are cultivated in Ethiopian society. We are given the opportunity to become better acquainted with the Amharic language and its role in shaping social relations, and particularly with the diversity of linguistic honorifics in this language. Changes in the sphere of interpersonal relations in 20th century Ethiopia, which evolved from an isolated, almost feudal, country into a federal democracy immersed in a dynamically globalising world, were of an extremely strong and radical nature. [From the review by Prof. Kamilla Termińska, University of Silesia] Cena: 25,00 zł Ewa Wołk ł E w a W o k T o w a r d s t h e C o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n o f t h e S p h e r e o f I n t e r p e r s o n a l l R e a t i o n s i n A m h a r i c Towards the Conceptualization of the Sphere of Interpersonal Relations in Amharic amharic_okl.indd 1 ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== 10/21/08 11:15:25 PM Towards the Conceptualization of the Sphere of Interpersonal Relations in Amharic amharic_str.indd 1 ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== 6/15/08 3:52:44 PM Ewa Wołk Towards the Conceptualization of the Sphere of Interpersonal Relations in Amharic amharic_str.indd 2 ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== 6/15/08 3:52:47 PM Reviewers Nina Pawlak Kamilla Termińska Cover design Edwin Radzikowski Commissioning Editor Maria Szewczyk Copy Editor and Technical Assistant Aniela Korzeniowska Production Editor Zofi a Kosińska Typesetting Dariusz Górski On the cover: traditional Ethiopian painting on leather (author unknown) Published with the fi nancial support of the Rector and the Oriental Faculty of the University of Warsaw © Copyright by Warsaw University Press 2008 © Copyright by Ewa Wołk 2008 ISBN 978-83-235-2850-0 (PDF) Warsaw University Press 00-497 Warszawa, ul. Nowy Świat 4 http:// www.wuw.pl; e-mail: wuw@uw.edu.pl Commercial Division: tel. (0 48 22) 55-31-333; e-mail: dz.handlowy@uw.edu.pl Internet sale: http://www.wuw.pl/ksiegarnia First edition ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Contents Acknowledgements ........................................................................................... 7 Abbreviations ......................................................................................... 8 Index of source texts ........................................................................................ 9 Introduction .......................................................................................................11 Transliteration ...................................................................................................16 I. The subject of research and methodology ............................................18 A short history of Amharic ...................................................................................18 Language policy ....................................................................................................19 Source materials ....................................................................................................25 Questions and methodology ..................................................................................27 II. Honorifi cs in Amharic...............................................................................30 Sociolinguistic microcosm ....................................................................................30 Amharic terms for honorifi cs ................................................................................35 Exponents of the honorifi cs category ...................................................................38 Summary ................................................................................................................42 III. Communication at the public level .....................................................47 Addressing citizens and rulers ..............................................................................47 Orders and prohibitions .........................................................................................56 Advertisements ......................................................................................................60 IV. Expressive speech acts .............................................................................63 Everyday communication ......................................................................................63 Special occasions ...................................................................................................68 ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== 6 6 Contents V. Nominal forms of address ....................................................................... 78 Kinship terms ........................................................................................................ 78 Expressing affection ............................................................................................. 88 VI. Changes: directions and tendencies ................................................... 91 Transformations in perception ............................................................................. 91 The evolution of ‘gēta’ ......................................................................................... 94 VII. The morpheme -ta and the sphere of personal relation ............. 99 Respect and non-respect ......................................................................................100 Expressive speech acts ........................................................................................102 Other personal contacts .......................................................................................103 Ways of derivation ...............................................................................................107 Conclusions ......................................................................................................110 Index ...................................................................................................................116 Bibliography ....................................................................................................122 ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Acknowledgements This book is based on my PhD dissertation submitted in December 2003 to the Department of African Languages and Cultures in the Institute of Oriental Studies at Warsaw University. The thesis was written in Polish under the supervision of Professor Joanna Mantel-Niećko and the present publication is a revised English version of the original text. I am truly grateful to Professor Joanna Mantel-Niećko who was al- ways ready to share her invaluable knowledge of all the things related to Ethiopia. It was thanks to her encouragement, patience and personal in- volvement that I could learn so much while writing this thesis and her confi dence in me helped immensely throughout my research project. The completion of this endeavor would not have been possible without fi nancial assistance from the Committee of Scientifi c Research (KBN). Thanks to this grant I was able to do the fi eldwork in Ethiopia, which to a large extent determined the direction of my research. I would like to thank everyone in Ethiopia for their precious help. In particular, I am in- debted to Doctor Amsalu Aklilu who showed lots of understanding for my studies and drew my attention to the literature I later based my work on. Also I would like to express my gratitude to the academics from the De- partment of Linguistics and Literature of the Addis Ababa University, Professor Baye Yimam for sharing with me his views of the subject and Berhanu Gebeyyehu for his inspiring advice. Last but not least is Hareg- wein Kebbede from the Ethiopian Languages Research Centre, whom I would like to thank for her patience in explaining Amharic diffi culties I encountered on my way. ¦×¸¡‚Ea ÂhÞMD I dedicate this book to the memory of my beloved sister Ela who was always so proud of me. ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Abbreviations – accusative – feminine gender acc f imper – imperative jus m neg O OBS p pl pos s – jussive – masculine gender – negation – object – personal observation – person – plural – possesive pronoun – singular ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Index of source texts – Addīs Zemen (1999) September 10 (6 Pwagumē 1991A.M.), Addis Ababa, p. 2. – Amarinynya mezgebe k’alat (2001), Haregeweyn Kebbede, Li’ulseged Irkiyhun, Melaku Azene et al (eds) Yeītyop’ya k’wank’wawoch t’inatinna mirimmir ma’ikel, Addis Ababa: Addīs Abeba yunīversītī. – Dīvī (2001) fi lm, script and direction by: Bīnyam Werk’u, Addis Ababa: Jazz Master Sawnd. – Fik’ir iske mek’abir (1966) Haddīs Alemayehu, Addis Ababa: Mēga Asatamī Dirijjit. – Ifta (2000) short stories collection including: K’omchē am- baw by Derejje Dessta and Yeloterī t’os by Shambel Serra- hiywet, Addis Ababa: Fana Dēmokrasī Asatamī Dirijjit. – Ifoyta (1999) Nov.-Dec. (hidar-tahsas), no. 3-4, Addis Ababa. – Ishohama werk’ (2000) Se’ada Mehammed, Addis Ababa: Mēga Asatamī Dirijjit. – Ye’amarinynya mezgebe k’alat (1959) Kesatē Birhan Tesem- ma, Addis Ababa: Artīstīk Mattemīya Bēt. – Kebuska bestejerba (1994) Fik’remark’os Dessita, Addis Ababa: Ītyop’ya Mets’ahift Dirijjit. – K’onjowochu (1997) Serk’ Da., Addis Ababa: Mēga Asatamī Dirijjit. – Letters from Ethiopian Rulers (1985) Appleyard D. L., Whit- stable: Oxford University Press. – Beēritra kifl e hager k’ey kokeb hulegeb abyotawī zemecha guba’ē (January 1982), speeches of Mengistu Hayle Maryam, Asmara. ADD AMA DIV FIK’ IFT IFO ISH KBT KEB K’ON LET MEN ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Ababa: Artīstīk Matemīya Bēt. – Tikusat (1997) Sibhat Gebre’igzīabhēr, Addis Ababa: Mēga – Timhirtē ye’aynē birhan mestawetē (1958) M. Danēl, Dessē: Asatamī Dirijjit. Nigd Mattemīya Bēt. – Serto ader (1980) 19 June (Senē 12, 1972), no.1, Addis Ababa. – Sewwir chilot (1999) a fi lm, script and direction: Demmere Ts’egē, Addis Ababa: Shalom Vīdīyonna Mastawek’īyya. Index of source texts – Yezemen tarīk tizzitayyē (2002) Mersē Hazen Welde K’īrk’os, Addis Ababa: Zamra Asatamī. MHWK – Yeamarinynya sewasiw Mersē Hazen Welde K’īrk’os (1956) Addis Ababa: Artīstīk Mattemīya Bēt. – Yetarīk mastawesha (1969/70) Kebbede Tesemma, Addis 10 MER TES TIK TIM SER SEW ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Introduction This work attempts to answer a very general question concerning how various aspects within the sphere of interpersonal relations are expressed in the Amharic language. The assumption that social relationships are refl ected in communication and, in particular, in forms of address, in which the members of a given society articulate the ways of reciprocal perception serve as the basis for the research. Thus, the subject of the analysis presented here are the ways of address understood as pragmatic expressions, which include the grammatical and lexical elements used by Amharic language speakers in a variety of speech situations. They carry information about the mode of perceiving both the listener and the person referred to by the speaker and they specify the degree and character of social distance between the interlocutors. In my research I was interested in the interpretation of the communal features of both direct and indirect participants of a speech act on the basis of the linguistic elements they consciously employed. This led the study towards unearthing an internal conceptualization, particular for this language, that structures the sphere of interpersonal relations in Amharic. Another aim was to establish how socio-economic, political and cultural factors determine and transform the formation, the grammar and the lexis as well as the functional distribution of the forms of address. Such an approach places the study in the fi elds of sociolinguistics and linguistic pragmatics. To the best of my knowledge this question, of primary importance from the pragmatic point of view, has not been investigated so far in research on the Amharic language. Focus on the twentieth century is justifi ed by the fact that in the his- tory of Ethiopia it was the time of fundamental political as well as social transformations. In the analysis of the language material, particular atten- ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== 12 Introduction tion is paid to the changes that took place under the infl uence of internal and external historical factors, with the aim to reveal tendencies and their nature. The study therefore encompasses synchronic as well as diachronic elements. Such an approach sheds light on the history of a language and its development. Search for language-internal conceptualization explains the decision to limit the analysis to Amharic. Reference to some other language would require examination of that language according to the criteria adopted in this work. Applying a comparative method would involve looking for common forms of address in at least two different languages. A compara- tive analysis universalizes and tends towards fi nding characteristics of different phenomena independent of linguistic structures or social relations in which the structures function. In this sense it does not allow one to grasp those mechanisms that regulate verbal communication in a way specifi c for a particular language. My aim was to fi nd characteristics typical of a given culture at a given time and to provide a consistent study of one language at different stages of its historical transformation. I am aware of the fact that translating Amharic utterances into English is a comparison in itself but this limitation is a consequence of the very nature of inter-lingual communication. Understanding any conceptualiza- tion in a language different than the analysed one must make use of inter- pretative operations in two different languages employing the conceptual system of the language of description at the risk of misrepresenting the picture of reality of the analysed language. The diffi culty of rendering in English the Amharic possessive pronoun 1s yenē ‘my’ in collocation with forms of address may serve as an example here. In English it was not possible to fi nd a similar way of mutual perception, which would include familiarity as well as respect and affection. The pronoun in question func- tions in Amharic both in respectful and non-respectful address without diminishing the honorifi c level of an utterance. In order to minimalize the unavoidable diffi culties equivalent forms were used, which limits transla- tion to the function of representing individual elements of an utterance in a literal manner. To avoid ethnocentrism I also use Amharic labels once the term has been introduced, which may cause certain diffi culties for readers specializing in languages other than Amharic. ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw== Introduction 13 Particular effort was made to present grammatical and lexical elements that refer to the sphere of interpersonal relations in their sociolinguistic context, hence the comprehensive descriptions, which, it is believed, allow for a better understanding of basic concepts. As the language material plays the principal role in this analysis it makes it possible to come clos- er to understanding the immanent structure of the language. Extracting meanings from the context and their subsequent verifi cation gives way to closer interpretation of their semantic representation. This, in turn, facili- tates a more exact understanding of the reality where concepts function and leads to a better knowledge of the social structure and changes in interpersonal relations. It also helps to comprehend the ways in which language absorbs new impulses. In collecting language material I adopted criteria that allowed for the gathering of utterances which refer to different aspects of the life of an individual and his or her place in a society. I started with strictly formal situations such as contacts taking place between the authorities and the people of Ethiopia, through offi cial contacts with superiors at work and with strangers, up to more intimate relations among relatives and friends. It was important for the situations and communicates to be natural. The frequency of a given linguistic phenomenon was less important than the fact of its appearance. Due to a wider accessibility of contemporary sources I have concentrated on the sources from the last decade, which included novels, fi lms, newspapers and magazines, television and radio programmes, interviews and questionnaires with Ethiopians as well as personal obser- vations, i.e. very different uses of ‘language’. The great diversity of the contemporary materials has not allowed me to fi nd their historical coun- terparts, which I could investigate to a similar degree. Due to this fact, the historical texts served mainly as a point of reference that helped to record those changes which I found important for registering the tendencies of communicative transformations in the Ethiopian society. The research and method of interpretation have been infl uenced by a sociolinguistic analysis of the Amharic, which include two papers by Joanna Mantel-Niećko (1975; 1998): one describing the forms of address used by citizens of Addis Ababa in the mid-20th century and the other one presenting the language-internal system of concepts referring to the Ethi- ##7#52#aSUZPUk1BVC1WaXJ0dWFsbw==
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