Vuya uhodhe! Unpacking the Form and Content of Informal Traders' Advertisements: A Submission from the Railway Siding Market Expedition in Masvingo

Mika Nyoni, Tsitsi Nyoni
2013 Greener Journal of Social Sciences  
This paper explores the linguistic repertoire of informal traders at the Railway Siding Market in Masvingo town, Zimbabwe. The researchers armed with notebooks, cell phones and video cameras recorded verbatim the advertisements on several days traversing the entire geography of the expansive market. The researchers did this in order to study the chosen phenomenon in situ observing the spirited advertising or the verbal gymnastics in the duel to bring bread and butter on the table. Interviews
more » ... e also held with a few selected respondents. The paper argues that though the main activity engaged by the traders is a way to eke out a living and some may see their oral endeavours as nothing more than advertising, close scrutiny shows that those verbal efforts should be viewed as part of the rich African orature heritage adopting and adapting to a kaleidoscopic socio-politico-economic terrain. From the analysis of the linguistic data gathered one can witness a plethora of linguistic processes at play including borrowing, extension, narrowing, coinage, anti-language, among many. Also discernible from the code used and the material gathered and analyzed are the values, attitudes and stereotypes of the speech community which are discussed in this paper.
doi:10.15580/gjss.2013.5.011613382 fatcat:mu67irkgezat3mr6xjlwdl5icm