Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies <p><em>Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies</em>&nbsp;publishes articles on a wide range of linguistic topics and acts as a forum for research into ALL the languages of southern Africa, including English and Afrikaans. Original contributions are welcomed on any of the core areas of linguistics, both theoretical (e.g. syntax, phonology, semantics) and applied (e.g. sociolinguistic topics, language teaching, language policy). Review articles, short research reports and book reviews are also welcomed. Articles in languages other than English are accompanied by an extended English summary.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Read more <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.&nbsp;</div> en-US Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the publisher. (Publishing Manager) (Editorial Office) Wed, 26 Jun 2024 09:08:18 +0000 OJS 60 Teachers’ and principals’ perceptions of reading: Can they perpetuate inequalities in reading? <p>What teachers know about a subject that they teach and how well informed they are about the effective ways to teach it can affect the&nbsp; performance of learners in their classes. The aim of this study was to investigate teachers’ and principals’ perception about reading to&nbsp; examine possible factors that contribute to inequalities in reading. This study was conducted in four poorly resourced schools with low&nbsp; academic performance in the Zambezi region of north-eastern Namibia. The schools cater for learners from pre-primary to Grade 9, and&nbsp; most learners are from a low socio-economic background. Drawing on a componential interactive view of reading derived from the&nbsp; science of reading, a qualitative research method was used with two semi-structured interview guides (one for seven Grade 5 teachers&nbsp; and one for four school principals) in four schools, to investigate what the participants know about reading and how to teach it. The&nbsp; interview results show that the teachers and the principals had limited knowledge about teaching reading comprehension. The teachers&nbsp; tended to ‘do’ reading rather than teach it, and they did not provide necessary reading support to learners because they did not have&nbsp; enough knowledge and skills about teaching reading. The findings suggest that the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture needs to&nbsp; strengthen teacher development programmes and that teacher training institutions need to examine the quality of their training.&nbsp;</p> Belden Liswaniso Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 The open court principle in Zimbabwe: A language rights perspective <p>This article examines the open court principle in Zimbabwe from a language rights perspective. Data were collected through an analysis&nbsp; of the statutes which enshrine this principle to examine their adequacy (or lack thereof). Court observations and semi-structured&nbsp; interviews with purposively sampled key participants were used to corroborate data from document analysis. Findings of this study show&nbsp; that Zimbabwean courts are not open courts in the true sense of the word because members of the public in the gallery are not&nbsp; guaranteed the right to an interpreter or translator. Legally represented litigants or those who express comfort with English are not offered interpretation services, which is a clear indication that interpretation services are primarily meant for litigants and not members&nbsp; of the public in the gallery. Consequently, Zimbabwean courts merely guarantee physical access, and deny members of the public&nbsp; linguistic access. English is the language of the proceedings and record, yet the majority of the members of the public are functionally&nbsp; illiterate in English. Based on this, I therefore argue that opening up the physical space of courts and guaranteeing physical access to the&nbsp; court documents is of little or no use if the citizens are linguistically excluded.&nbsp;</p> Eventhough Ndlovu Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Teaching EFL reading in Senegal: Current practices and recommendations <p>Reading comprehension involves understanding and interpreting information in written texts and constitutes a minimum academic&nbsp; ‘threshold’ that impacts broader education. Developing strong reading skills is particularly challenging for non-native readers because of&nbsp; the dual need for strong linguistic skills and efficient strategy use. This study focused on teaching English reading in Senegal, where most&nbsp; students are non-native speakers of the language and often perform poorly on national reading examinations, suggesting that&nbsp; how English reading is taught needs improvement grounded in best practices. 54 Senegalese EFL teachers completed an online survey&nbsp; eliciting their backgrounds and training, classroom profiles, knowledge and frequency of use of instructional practices and beliefs about&nbsp; the effectiveness of and rationale for various practices. Teachers were aware of most basic strategies, but many lacked familiarity with&nbsp; concepts associated with modern (cognitive) approaches to reading. Though some effective techniques were widely used, teachers’&nbsp; reasons for using them did not always align with research, suggesting that teachers may misunderstand them. The article concludes with&nbsp; recommendations for improving EFL teacher training and instruction, such as a greater focus on interactive questioning and&nbsp; activities with an instructional (not assessment) focus that are applicable in Senegal and other developing nations.&nbsp;</p> Mohamadou Bachir Kane, Katherine I. Martin Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Premodifiers and a scarcity-productivity hypothesis in Yorùbá: Does the scarcity of adjectives influence productivity of the premodification slot? <p>The notion that the Yorùbá language operates only a small, closed class of adjectives is well noted in the literature. However, this&nbsp; hypothesis of scarcity of adjectives in the Yorùbá language is yet to be examined in light of how such scarcity may influence the creativity&nbsp; of speakers in creating new functional adjectives, influence the placement of ‘created’ adjectives and the productivity of the premodification slot in the noun phrase structure. Combining theoretical concepts from construction grammar with corpus evidence&nbsp; drawn from a major source of contemporary Yorùbá, the article shows how speakers of Yorùbá negotiate between scarcity, creativity,&nbsp; placement and complexity in modifying their referents. The article identifies different forms of premodifiers, especially a sort of ‘creative&nbsp; premodifier’ with which a complex syntactic-semantic behaviour is built into the ensuing NP structure. It is argued that a scarcity of&nbsp; attributive adjectives in the language is a crucial variable with which relations between premodifiers and postmodifiers can be explored.&nbsp;</p> Mayowa Akinlotan Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Semiotic modes accentuating learners’ metafunctions: The systemic functional approach to multimodal discourse analysis <p>Drawing on the systemic functional approach to multimodal discourse analysis, this study investigates how struggling multilingual&nbsp; writers use semiotic modes to achieve different metafunctions in their multimodal composition. This study used the systemic functional&nbsp; approach to multimodal discourse analysis as a potential linguistic method to analyse how students’ semiotic choices work together in&nbsp; their multimodal composition to reflect three metafunctions of language (i.e. ideational, interpersonal and textual). The study analysed a&nbsp; hundred samples of multimodal composition and interviewed ten teachers to explore how students’ use of different semiotic modes&nbsp; reflected different metafunctions in multimodal composition. The study concludes that students conveyed different metafunctions in&nbsp; their multimodal composition via blending different semiotic modes that, in turn, reframe the conception about semiotic modes from&nbsp; meaningless isolated modes to those that create opportunities for constructing meaning. Theoretical and pedagogical implications for&nbsp; linguistics, applied linguistics, multilingualism and the systemic functional approach to multimodal discourse analysis research are&nbsp; discussed.&nbsp;</p> Azza A. M. Abdelrahim Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Toxicity in gendered Sepedi proverbs: A textual analysis <p>This article examines some linguistic features of Sepedi proverbs. The aim is to shed light on how toxic masculinity is manifested in&nbsp; proverbs and to contribute to the emerging research on masculinity. A literature search was first carried out on language use perceived&nbsp; to be contributing to injurious or toxic behaviour from men, barriers to help-seeking behaviour in men and the strategies they use to deal&nbsp; with their psychosocial issues. A collection of proverbs was then analysed according to their structural features. A hybrid&nbsp; descriptive-explanatory qualitative approach was used in analysing and describing the data. The proverbs’ analytic framework involved&nbsp; the semantic analysis of proverbs and three classes of meaning were identified, i.e. a literally translated meaning, a textual meaning and&nbsp; a figurative meaning. The first part of the analysis revealed similar structural properties according to different grammatical structures&nbsp; followed in the proverbs. The second part involved a more abstract level of analysis which was evaluative. Proverbs were categorised&nbsp; according to their potential impact on the formation of attitudes and norms of behaviour in a culture based on a continuum of toxicity.&nbsp; Some proverbs were determined to be harmful, while others were insensitive or discriminatory.&nbsp;</p> Napjadi Letsoalo Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Cultural and social construction of illness: The case of Basotho patients’ folk interpretations of their illness experiences <p>This article demonstrates the role played by culture in shaping the individual’s construction of the meaning and experience of illness. It&nbsp; shows how culture plays a significant part in providing valuable insights into an individual’s lived experiences and their perceptions of&nbsp; what constitutes their physical, psychological and/or emotional afflictions. It reveals that Basotho patients express cultural beliefs&nbsp; through idiomatic forms which merely allude to the real nature of their illness(es), and some Sesotho vocabulary that may be difficult to&nbsp; understand, especially when talking about sexually transmitted illnesses or conditions. The results show that cultural differences and&nbsp; taboo topics surrounding sexuality were a major cause of the communication barriers between patients and health care professionals.&nbsp; The article highlights that the cultural and social constructions of the people’s illness experiences offer a valuable window into the unique&nbsp; design and complex nature of their value and belief systems that shape their everyday behaviours and constructions of and reactions to illness. It argues that these value and belief systems have the potential to yield significant insights into the nature or essence&nbsp; of the patients’ cultural explanatory representations of their illness experiences. The article fills the gap that exists vis-a-vis the impact of&nbsp; subjective experiences and social constructions of health and illness among Basotho adults.&nbsp;</p> Raphael Thuube, Beatrice Ekanjume Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 An encounter with some translators: Challenges they faced when translating <i>Long Walk</i> to Freedom <p>Scholars of translation studies are on record as saying that the translation process is not an easy task, because languages are unique.&nbsp; What can be easily expressed in one language may not be easily expressed in another. Added to the problem of lack of equivalent&nbsp; linguistic elements in translation are the challenges of culture. Translators feel compromised when encountering translation challenges&nbsp; which they cannot address though they possess mastery of both the source and target languages. The challenges faced by the four&nbsp; South African translators of Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom into Sesotho sa Leboa, isiZulu, isiXhosa and Afrikaans respectively are a&nbsp; case in point. Although these translators translated the same text into their languages, they each had unique challenges. This article&nbsp; examines the obstacles to the translation of the source text into the four languages mentioned above and the strategies used to address&nbsp; the obstacles. This study is qualitative in nature, where the responses of the translators during interviews are exposed, assessed and&nbsp; analysed.&nbsp;</p> Francinah Mokgobo Kanyane Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Exploring intrasectional variations of lexical bundles in medical research articles <p>This study employed a corpus-driven approach to examine the structures and functions of lexical bundles across the IMRD sections (i.e.&nbsp; Introduction, Methods, Results and Discussion) in a medical research article corpus totalling 4.8 million words. Results showed&nbsp; considerable intra-sectional variations of bundle structures and functions. Structurally, the Introduction and the Discussion were&nbsp; dominated by phrasal bundles (tokens), while the Methods section and the Results sections preferred clausal bundles (types). For&nbsp; structural subcategories, the Introduction showed apparent preference for bundles with ‘to-clause fragments’, the Methods section&nbsp; made heavy use of bundles with ‘passive verb phrases’, and the Discussion displayed a high usage of bundles with ‘(verb phrase) + that- clause fragments;. Functionally, the Introduction, Results and Discussion were dominated by text-oriented bundles, while the Methods&nbsp; section was dominated by research-oriented bundles (types and tokens). For functional subcategories, the Introduction, Results and&nbsp; Discussion included a considerable use of resultative bundles, while the Methods section exhibited a dense use of procedure bundles.&nbsp; Our results also revealed a close relationship between bundle structures and functions and the communicative functions of sections. Our&nbsp; study may have valuable pedagogical implications for medical academic writing.&nbsp;</p> Chen Liu, Fan Pan Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000 The helpfulness of code-switching in teaching Afrikaans as a first additional language <p>This study aimed to establish the different perceptions that teachers of Afrikaans First Additional Language (FAL) hold towards the&nbsp; helpfulness of different teaching strategies and their effectiveness in the language learning process of Afrikaans FAL in a high school&nbsp; setting. Code-switching has been proven to be a common strategy used by teachers in teaching languages to learners in bilingual and&nbsp; multilingual situations that can serve as a resource to help learners acquire proficiency in a second language (SL). The study was&nbsp; conducted at a single-sex Englishmedium high school in Pretoria among the teachers of Afrikaans FAL. A mixed method approach was&nbsp; employed, using (i) a language background questionnaire, (ii) a Likert-type scale questionnaire and (iii) an open-ended interview&nbsp; schedule to collect data, which was analysed quantitatively and qualitatively. The theoretical framework used in this study was social&nbsp; constructivism, as conceived by Vygotsky (1968). The study focused on the helpfulness of different teaching strategies in terms of&nbsp; teacher-learner interactions during instruction, as well as guided peer interactions, and concluded that the teachers perceive the use of&nbsp; the monolingual approach in certain circumstances to be beneficial, while the use of code-switching is better in other circumstances.&nbsp;</p> Melissa Rust, Joanine Nel Copyright (c) 2024 Wed, 26 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0000