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Rhodes > English Language and Linguistics > Latest News

Ron Simango at B4ntu

Date Released: Tue, 3 May 2011 10:00 +0200

Rhodes Linguistics Associate Professor Ron Simango recently presented a paper at the 4th International Conference on Bantu Languages (B4ntu) which was held in Berlin, Germany from April 7-9.  The conference, hosted by the Department of African Studies at Humboldt University, brought together more than one hundred specialists of Bantu linguistics currently working in various research institutes and universities: participants came mainly from nearly all parts of the world; from Japan to Brazil; South(ern) Africa to Norway. The theme of the conference was Historical Bantu Linguistics. In addition to the general sessions two workshops were organized: the first was on Bantu and its closest relatives, whose papers examined the origin and evolution of Bantu linguistic specificities with regards to corresponding features in closely related linguistic groups. The second workshop was on Tone and Intonation in Bantu, and it explored, among other issues, the distinction between tonal and non-tonal intonation as well as the interaction between lexical tones and intonational tones.

Prof Simango came to know about this conference through one of the workshop organizers from Potsdam University in Germany whom he met at the Linguistics conference in Pretoria in September 2010. He was encouraged to submit an abstract on a relevant topic for presentation, which he did. He was invited to present his paper titled "Tense and Aspect in ciNsenga" in the general session. The paper was well received and engendered much discussion both during and after the session. Some participants expressed the desire that there should be a special session on tense and aspect at the next conference which will take place in Paris in 2013.

Prof Simango says "This was a very fruitful conference: it was rich in substance and the standard of scholarship on offer was of the highest quality. I was proud to represent Rhodes University at such an important conference."

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