About Francis Nyamnjoh


  • nyamjoh-2bsepia Francis B. Nyamnjoh is Professor of anthropology at the University of Cape Town in South Africa

    Department of Social Anthropology University of Cape Town
    5.23 Arts Building
    Private Bag X3
    Rondebosch 7701
    Cape Town
    South Africa
    Tel: +27 21 650 3681
    Fax: +27 21 650 2307
    EMAIL

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Comments

PETER W. VAKUNTA

Francis B. Nyamnjoh's Stories from Abakwa is a remarkable depiction of the socio-economico-political realities of Mimboland aka Cameroon. The writer does more than re-write the events that characterize the day-to-day lives of the inhabitants of this terrestrial limbo. What strikes the reader the most in this anthology of short stories is the linguistic engineering that the author adeptly avails himself of. Camfranglais-- the mumbo-jumbo that not only baffles Fineboy Ayuk but leads to his unanticipated demise, is the hallmark of the code-switching that Nyamnjoh employs as a narartive technique in the collection.

Code-switching is perhaps one of the most effective strategies of linguistic appropriation at the disposal of this Cameroonian writer. It enables him to make the inter-language (third code) bear the burden of an experience for which terms and experiences in the inherited language do not seem appropriate. Code-switching occurs when the Empires writes back, as Ashcroft et al. would have it. By directly inscribing Cameroon Pidgin English into his text Nyamnjoh succeeds in showing that the socio- economic dichotomies created by colonialism have been retained in postcolonial Cameroon, for the Pidginized form of a language is often a marker of social status.

Throughtout the narrative, the reader enjoys not only the narrator's virtuosity in fictional narrative but also his verve at word-smiting. All in all, Stories from Abakwa is a replica of the travails of life well known to Cameroonians.

Nyamnjoh

Hi Peter,
Many thanks for your comment and very interesting angle from which you've read Stories from Abakwa. Let's keep the exchange flowing.
cheers
Nyamnjoh

Sr. Marie Therese Diang

I found this name Nyamjuoh in a book I am reading now and being a Cameroonian I immediately thought I should check out this name. I searched it on the internet and was glad to get the confirmation that it is a Cameroonian name. The book I am reading is titled "Faith in Schools" by Amy Stambach, an American. She say you and Geschiere observe that political- economic liberalization leads to the intensification of debates about who belongs where.
Hope to be able to connect with you and learn more about sociology.

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