Disregarding the corpus: head-word and sense treatment in Shona monolingual lexicography

  • W Mavhu


With specific reference to Shona monolingual lexicography, this article discusses how corpus-based lexicographers might, in some instances, decide not strictly to adhere to the corpus when it comes to headword and sense treatment. The writer is a member of the African Languages Research Institute (ALRI), formerly known as the African Languages Lexical (ALLEX) Project. ALRI is a nonfaculty interdisciplinary unit dedicated to research on and the development of African languages in Zimbabwe. The writer is part of the six-member team that compiled the now published Shona monolingual, synchronic, medium-sized and general-purpose dictionary Du-ramazwi Guru ReChiShona (2001). The article originates from the writer's experience of working on this dictionary. The article highlights the fact that being corpus-based does not necessarily imply being corpus-bound. Keywords: corpus, corpus-based, frequency, headword, lexicography, sense, shona, slang, synonyms

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eISSN: 2224-0039
print ISSN: 1684-4904