The Documentation of Place Names in an Endangered Language Environment: A Case Study of the !Xoon in Southern Omaheke, Namibia

Gertrud Boden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The West !Xoon variety of the Taa language complex is spoken by a
small community of former hunter-gatherers in southeastern Namibia whose
presence is virtually invisible on official topographical maps. This article presents
the results of the documentation of !Xoon place names and describes their
semantic sources and grammatical constructions. It further discusses how the
high number of alternative names for the same place might be related to the
Taa cognitive model of the southern Kalahari landscape, language endangerment
and loss, general flexibility in !Xoon naming practices, and the complex
historical layers of language contact.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-76
Number of pages42
JournalAnthropological Linguistics
Volume53
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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