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Shona Sentential Names: A Brief Overview

Jacob Mapara

Publication Year: 2013

This book draws on the case of the Shona and other Bantu people of Africa to argue that names are not mere identity tags. Names are an important cultural symbol of the people who give and bear them. The book challenges linguists and other social scientists to pay particular attention to the significance of names in the study of language use in society. Equally, it demonstrates the importance of names as part of the distinctive repertoire of Shona cultural heritage. Each Shona sentential name is a statement about that reality of being Shona. Carried in each name are sentiments that reflect on prevalent social, economic and political relations. The book focuses in particular on social names, religious names and war names inspired by such events as Zimbabweís war of liberation.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 2-3


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pp. 4-5

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pp. v-vii

This book is about names, and not just any names, but human names or anthroponyms as well as how they are used by the Manyika of eastern Zimbabwe. The Manyika are found in both Mutasa and Nyanga districts of Manicaland. It is again not just about Manyika names, but how the Manyika have ...

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pp. ix-11

I would like to thank everyone who participated in one way or another in assisting me to shape and reshape this book. Without insights of these colleagues who are too numerous to mention, this work would not have seen the light of day. ...

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Chapter I - Introduction

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pp. 1-32

Names are words or sets of words by which a person, animal, place, or thing is known, addressed, or referred to. They are identity tags or badges of the named and the identified. They are given with the intention of relaying certain images or perceptions and they may succeed or fail in doing this. Names may carry or carry no meanings. ...

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Chapter II - Shona Names as Heritage and Cultural Expressions

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pp. 33-52

Names fall under several categories. Linguistically they are parts of speech. As labels that help to identify objects or human beings they belong to the realm of language study. But besides that names also have another interesting dimension to them. It is important to realise that the practice of naming ...

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Chapter III - The Socio-cultural Names of the Manyika

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pp. 53-88

Naming is as important as marriage among most of the people of the African continent. The naming practice is a rite of passage that in most cases marks the transition from being in the womb to being a member who is visible and has come into the world of human beings. This explains why among ...

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Chapter IV - Some Shona Theophoric Sentential Anthroponyms

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pp. 89-109

It is generally accepted that Africans are a highly religious people. While not all of them are Christians, some have embraced Christianity as a faith and have syncretised this with their own indigenous African religions. The names that they ...

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Chapter V - Chimurenga names

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pp. 111-148

Pfukwa (2008: 240) decries the fact that there is a dearth in the study of war names in Zimbabwe. He unfortunately does not state whether names of guerrillas have also been studied in countries that waged liberation wars such as Angola and Mozambique as well as Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau. ...

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Chapter VI - Conclusion

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pp. 149-153

This book has discussed and highlighted Shona sentential names as a means that is used by the Shona, specifically the Manyika as a means of relaying messages to different people. It has discussed these names on in three different categories, not because these are enough, but because the researcher is of ...


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pp. 155-163

Back cover

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p. 176-176

E-ISBN-13: 9789956790784
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956790753

Page Count: 174
Publication Year: 2013