Ghana Journal of Linguistics <p>The <em>Ghana Journal of Linguistics</em> is a peer-reviewed scholarly journal appearing twice a year, published by the Linguistics Association of Ghana. Beginning with Volume 2 (2013) it is published in electronic format only, open access, at However print-on-demand copies can be made available on application to Digibooks Ghana Ltd.:</p><p>The Editors welcome papers on all aspects of linguistics. Articles submitted should not have been previously published.</p><p>The Editors welcome reports on research in progress and brief notices of research findings, as well as news of general interest to linguists.</p><p>The Editors also welcome books from authors and publishers for review in the <em>Ghana Journal of Linguistics</em>. They may be sent to Dr. Obadele Kambon, Editor-in-Chief, Ghana Journal of Linguistics, University of Ghana, P. O. Box LG73, Accra, Ghana. Anyone who wishes to review a particular book is invited to contact the editor.</p><p>Submissions should be submitted electronically to the Editor-in-Chief, at <a title="Ghana Journal of Linguistics" href=""></a>. They should be accompanied by a brief biographical note giving the author’s name in the form it should appear in print, plus current academic or professional position and field of research interest. Please see the Author guidelines for detailed instructions.</p><p>The <em>Ghana Journal of Linguistics</em> is published by the Linguistics Association of Ghana, P. O. Box LG61, Legon, Accra, Ghana.<br />Email: Website: <a title="" href="" target="_blank"></a></p> Linguistics Association of Ghana en-US Ghana Journal of Linguistics 2026-6596 © Linguistics Association of Ghana Inside Front Cover <p>N/A</p> Ọbádélé Kambon Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 Table of Contents <p>N/A</p> Ọbádélé Kambon Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 i iii A Constraint-Based Account of the Agentive Prefix ‘oní-’ in the Standard Yorùbá <p>When attached to vowel-initial nouns to derive agentive nominals, the prefix /oní-/ ‘owner/seller/doer/agent of’ in the Standard Yorùbá transforms to five morphologically related variants ‒ [al-], [el-], [ẹl-], [ol-], and [ọl-] ‒ whose transformation is induced by four distinct phonological processes: vowel deletion, consonant denasalization, vowel assimilation, and tone docking. The rule-based approach employed heretofore in the existing studies to account for the phenomenon appears unnecessarily complex and analytically deficient in explaining how the processes fit together. It is against this backdrop that the present study proposed a constraint-based analysis within the framework of Optimality Theory, which explains the transformational journey of the agentive prefix in a parallel fashion. The majority of the data were supplied by the researcher, being a native speaker of the language, while the rest were reproduced from the extant literature. Within the premise of the approach adopted, the paper argued that the well-formedness of the variants (allomorphs) of /oní-/ is generally governed by a set of alignment, markedness, and faithfulness constraints whose ranking uniformly and straightforwardly captures the four phonological processes. Therefore, the paper contended that rather than postulating multiple unrelated phonological rules to account for the variants of the prefix, a single hierarchy suffices: NO-HIATUS, NO-FLOAT<sub>[</sub><sub>TONE</sub><sub>],</sub>&nbsp;MAX(GRWD) &gt;&gt; ALIGN[VOC]-L &gt;&gt; IDENT(AFX) &gt;&gt; MAX(AFX). The paper concluded that the simplicity of a constraint-based analysis has some implication for language pedagogy in terms of learnability: a simple grammar is easier to learn than a complex one.</p> Mayowa Oyinloye Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 1 29 Interrogative Pronouns in Dagbani and Likpakpaanl <p>This paper provides an analysis of the properties of interrogative pronouns of Mabia languages drawing data from Dagbani and Likpakpaanl. We focus on the inventory, internal structure, and key grammatical characterisation of the interrogative pronouns. We contend that interrogative pronouns are salient syntactic elements in the content question systems of these languages. In addition, we demonstrate that number marking, distinction between human/non-human and lexical ambiguity are salient grammatical properties of these interrogative pronouns. We further show that the inflection for number employs both suppletive and nonsuppletive patterns. We also contend that the interrogative pronouns that specify for the semantic domains of [+human], [-human] and [+thing] are sensitive to number, since they alternate for plurality (<em>ŋuni ~banima</em> (<a href=""></a>&nbsp;~ who-pl), <em>b</em><em>o~bonima</em> (<a href=""></a>&nbsp;~what-pl), <em>dini~dinnima</em> ( ~ what.thing-pl) for Dagbani and (<em>ŋma</em><em> ~</em><em>bilabi</em> (<a href=""></a>&nbsp;~ who-pl), <em>nilan</em><em> ~</em><em> bilabi</em> (<a href=""></a>&nbsp;~what-pl), <em>ba</em><em> ~</em><em> ba</em> ( ~ what.thing-pl) for Likpakpaanl. &nbsp;Because the root may differ or be the same from that of the plural as evident in both languages, we propose that number marking in these interrogative words exhibit both suppletive and nonsuppletive patterns. The data are based on native introspection of the authors who are native speakers of these languages. This paper is important because of its empirical and theoretical contribution to the study of the Mabia languages.</p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Samuel Issah Samuel Owoahene Acheampong Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 30 57 Progressive Vowel Harmony in Gomoa <p>Previous studies on Akan ATR vowel harmony, including Berry (1957), Stewart (1967), Schachter &amp; Fromkin (1968), Dolphyne (1988) have centered on the concepts of regressive (anticipatory) directionality. Very little empirical evidence have been provided for the existence and robustness of progressive ATR vowel harmony in Akan. This paper, therefore, discusses progressive ATR vowel harmony in Gomoa, a sub-dialect of Fante, one of the major dialects of Akan (Kwa, Niger-Congo). In the previous studies of the Akan vowel harmony phenomenon, it has been established that the [+ATR] in the stem/root word moves leftward to harmonize with the [-ATR] vowel either within a morpheme or across morpheme boundary [VH= (-ATR)<sub>prefix</sub> + (+ATR]<sub>stem</sub> = [(+ATR, +ATR)] and cannot spreads to harmonize with the&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; [-ATR] suffix morpheme [VH= (-ATR)<sub>prefix</sub> + (+ATR]<sub>stem</sub> + (-ATR)s<sub>uffix</sub>= [(+ATR +ATR-ATR)]. In the present study, we demonstrate that the [+ATR] in the stem/root word triggers rightward to harmonize with the [-ATR] vowel in the suffix or a following vowel in the same domain [VH=&nbsp; (-ATR)<sub>prefix</sub> + (+ATR]<sub>stem</sub> + (-ATR)s<sub>uffix</sub>= [(+ATR, +ATR, +ATR)]. Gomoa extensively displays progressive vowel harmony in stem words, verb suffixes, and nominal suffixes. We discuss this phenomenon within the framework of Autosegmental phonology (Goldsmith, 1976) after to show the evidence for the rightward direction of spreading.</p> John Odoom Kwasi Adomako Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 58 83 The Influence of American English and British English on Ghanaian English <p>English has been the <em>de facto</em> official language of Ghana since the country gained independence from Britain in 1957. According to Dolphyne (1995:31) “it is… standard written [British] English that newspaper editors and editors of journals aim at, as well as teachers in their teaching of English at all levels.” Shoba et al. (2013) also reinforce this stating that British English has remained the standard of the Ghanaian educational system since colonization. In recent times, however, American English has become more popular in Ghana, especially in the entertainment industry (Anderson et al., 2009). Using data from the International Corpus of English (Ghana component – written and spoken; British component – written and spoken; and the American component – written) and the Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA), this paper looks at the frequencies of <em>got</em>, <em>gotten</em> and the modals <em>will</em>, <em>shall</em>, <em>should</em> and <em>must</em> with the aim of finding out which of the two native varieties Ghanaian English patterns after. The results of the study reveal that while Ghanaian English reflects some influence from American English by showing a tendency to pattern after it with regard to <em>got</em> and <em>gotten</em>, the same cannot be said regarding the modals <em>will</em>, shall, <em>should</em> and <em>must</em>.</p> Kwaku Osei-Tutu Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 84 102 Concealment in Police-Suspect Interaction in Ibadan, Nigeria <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Police-suspect interaction, henceforth, PSI, is an integral aspect of forensic discourse. Existing scholarly works have engaged PSI from the linguistic and non-linguistic viewpoints. However, studies have been silent on the role of concealment in extracting confessional statements from suspects. It is against this backdrop that this study examines the discursive roles of concealment in PSI with a view to describing concealment strategies and their implications in police interrogation. The study is anchored on Dell Hymes’ ethnography of communication (EOC), considering its unequivocal engagement with contextual linguistic resources in representing participants’ goals in discourse. &nbsp;Interrogation sessions on conspiracy, felony, stealing, affray, and illegal possession of arms were tape-recorded at the State Criminal Investigation Department, Iyaganku, Ibadan, Oyo State. The study adopts the non-participant observation technique, unstructured and structured interviews. A discursive engagement of Dell Hymes’ EOC in investigating concealment in PSI Ibadan, reveals that IPOs and suspects adopt veiling, jargonisation, lexical replacement, hedging and deflection as concealment strategies. While suspects resort to concealment to seek exclusion, ignorance, withdrawal and anonymity, IPOs’ concealment strategies were orchestrated to seek suspects’ co-operation, allay suspects’ fears, boost suspects’ confidence, achieve confession with minimal input and protect suspects’ rights during interrogation sessions. Further studies on PSI could engage a comparative analysis of the use of concealment in PSI and civil cases.</p> <p><strong>Key words: </strong>Forensic discourse,<strong> c</strong>onfessional statement, concealment, police-suspect interaction, Ibadan</p> Temidayo Akinrinlola Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 103 124 Language and Ethnic sentiments in Nigeria: Evidence from Facebook comments <p>Given the role of English as a language of wider communication in Nigeria, it is possible for people with different languages to interact without much linguistic barrier. The English language, therefore, facilitates communication. However, ethnic differences are still evident in the reactions and comments of people in different discourses which sometimes may lead to conflict and separation. A lot of studies exist which explore the roles of language in national development and unity and those that investigate patterns of self-assertiveness among ethnic groups characterised by ethnolinguistic vitality. However, patterns of ideological conflicts and solidarity based on ethnic affiliations have been under-researched. The present study relies on readers’ responses to Facebook comments to determine the role of language and ethnicity in solidarity formations in Nigeria. Data for this work was collected on the Facebook timelines of some socio-cultural groups in Nigeria. Ethnolinguistic Identity Theory and its revised standard version was adopted as the theory for the analysis. We discovered at the end of the work that ethnic bias reflects in the comment and response of people on Facebook. The use of linguistic and sociolinguistic features aid the ethnic inclusion and exclusion on Facebook.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Joshua Sunday Ayantayo Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 125 150 Noun modification in Shinyiha <p>Modification is a typical defining function of adjectives in the world languages. However, it can be perfomed by single words, phrases or clauses. When dealing with modification of the noun, most studies (Rugemalira 2007, Lusekelo 2009, Van de Velde 2013; Williams 2005 etc) have focused on adjectives or on closed system elements (demonstratives, possessives, distributives, interrogatives etc) that appear within the noun phrase. Little attention has been paid to other marked forms like nouns, verbs, conjoined nous etc. that modify the head noun. This paper focuses on modification of nouns by nouns, verbs, participials, passives and locatives to express different property concepts. The paper uses markedness theory to show the markedness of forms other than pure adjectives to express property concepts. In addition the study shows structural changes taking place within these other modifiers. The study reveals that Shinyiha has several strategies its speakers use to modify the head noun including the use of derived nouns and irregular verbal forms which partake both properties of adjectives and verbs. &nbsp;</p> Devet Goodness Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 151 174 Language Needs of Francophone Students in an English as a Second Language Context <p>In this study, I examined the English language needs of 73 Francophone students who enrolled to pursue their undergraduate degree in an English as a Second Language context. The setting for this case study was a private university in Ghana. The focus of this study addresses an important gap in the literature on meeting the needs of francophone undergraduate students. The participants in this study were French-speaking students who mostly lived and learned in French-speaking countries prior to their arrival in Ghana; thus, their language needs differed from those of Ghanaian students who typically learn in English over the course of their educational careers. Due to the disjuncture of these Francophone participants’ previous educational and lived experiences with the English language, I investigated the relevance of the available English language courses to their academic and career needs.&nbsp; Data collection took the form of a questionnaire and interviews, for the purpose of eliciting information about participants’ demography, language skills, and tasks relevant to their academics and future careers. In addition, the participants provided interview responses describing their reasons for learning in an English medium university. Findings indicate that Francophone ESL undergraduate students ascribe varying degrees of relevance and importance to English courses, and these reported differences in perceived relevance cohere with participants’ varying academic and career goals and needs.</p> Adeline Borti Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 175 202 A Study of Pragmatic Acts and Hate Speech Strategies in Christian Sermons in Nigeria <p>Ideology loaded language may be used as instrument of control and for the production of hate speech and may be linked to the intensity of sectarian violence in contemporary Nigeria. This paper, therefore, evaluates the strategies for hate speech production in Christian sermons using Mey’s (1993) proposal on pragmatic acts, a modification of Austin (1962) and Searle (1969) speech act theories. Data, with two sermons from two well-known clerics and obtained from YouTube, has revealed that hate speech were produced through the pragmatic acts of innuendos and name-calling while set-up and co-option methods were deployed for audience participation. Whereas innuendos were linguistically realised as pronouns, name-calling takes the form of adjectives but function as nouns. Set-up and co-option were indirect linguistic strategies meant to empathise and attend to hearers’ face-needs. Pragmatic acts insulate preachers from backlash and highlight Nigeria’s social-political undercurrents. The enactment of hate speech in sermons justifies government initiatives in regulating religious activities.</p> Abayomi Opeoluwa Ayansola Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 203 220 Contributors to this Issue <p>N/A</p> Ọbádélé Kambon Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 221 225 Preferred Format for References <p>N/A</p> Ọbádélé Kambon Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2 226 227 Inside Back Cover Guidelines <p>N/A</p> Ọbádélé Kambon Copyright (c) 2021-12-31 2021-12-31 10 2