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L’impact de la téléphonie mobile sur le fulfulde du Cameroun septentrional

Abstract : Since mobile phones appeared on the market, there are more and more call-boxes in the town of Maroua (North Cameroon). One can distinguish different kinds of call boxes which are used, now, to sell phone credits. The main advantage of mobile phone, which has immediately been exploited, is to be quite easy to use for basic functions as calling and being called. It is not necessary to have studied at school nor to speak French to be able to use it. Non-literate persons have developped various strategies to turn it to their advantage. A new vocabulary was coined as the use of mobile phone was becoming more and more popular and its technology was evolving. This vocabulary contains neologisms (1) borrowed from French and English ; common words the meaning of which has been extended ; (3) new words created from the Fulfulde language itself. Many young people use the Fulfulde language to text their friends. Most of them never learned how to write this language. So, their writing follows the pattern of French orthography ; they write « ou » instead of « u », « é » instead of « e », « gué » instead of « ge », etc. Furthermore, the software programs installed in the mobile phones do not allow to use the phonetic characters required to write Fulfulde. Besides, the language used in short messages displays one of the main characteristics of contemporary urban Fulfulde, that is code-switching. The speaker may switch form Fulfulde to French and vice versa. In a dialogue, you are asked a question in French and you answer in Fulfulde.
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Contributor : Henry Tourneux <>
Submitted on : Saturday, December 12, 2020 - 11:56:54 AM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 12, 2021 - 3:27:17 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Saturday, March 13, 2021 - 6:23:36 PM


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  • HAL Id : halshs-03059123, version 1



Henry Tourneux, G. Hadidja Konaï. L’impact de la téléphonie mobile sur le fulfulde du Cameroun septentrional. 2nd Symposium on West African Languages 2016 Department of African Studies, Oct 2016, Vienne, Autriche. ⟨halshs-03059123v1⟩



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