By Edda L. Fields-Black
Mangrove rice farming on West Africa's Rice Coast used to be the replicate photograph of tidewater rice plantations labored by means of enslaved Africans in 18th-century South Carolina and Georgia. This booklet reconstructs the advance of rice-growing know-how one of the Baga and Nalu of coastal Guinea, starting greater than a millennium sooner than the transatlantic slave exchange. It finds an image of dynamic pre-colonial coastal societies, relatively not like the static, homogenous pre-modern Africa of earlier scholarship. From its exam of inheritance, innovation, and borrowing, Deep Roots models a conception of cultural switch that encompasses the variety of groups, cultures, and kinds of expression in Africa and the African diaspora.
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Extra info for Deep Roots: Rice Farmers in West Africa and the African Diaspora (Blacks in the Diaspora)
Two separate languages are born. A historical linguists’ work can then begin. An explanation of the technical operations of the method follows, drawing on the familiar example of Indo-European languages to demonstrate key concepts of the method. Readers must always keep in mind a principle diﬀerence between Indo-European languages and language groups in Africa and 14 DEEP ROOTS between applying the comparative method of historical linguistics to IndoEuropean languages—as it was initially intended—and applying it to language groups in other areas of the world.
Since the 1960s, linguists have debated whether or not “Atlantic” is a genetic, merely a typological, or a geographic grouping. The Nalu, Mbulungish, Mboteni, and Sitem languages, whose speakers inhabit the Rio Nunez region and whose words are the foundation of this study, are part of the Atlantic language group. Since a group of genetically related languages by extension descended from a common linguistic ancestor, the languages in question also share their building blocks, a system of sounds, and regular rules of sound change.
According to a preponderance of cross-cultural evidence, cultural vocabulary words name such phenomena as social, political, cultural, and ritual institutions and practices. In contrast to core vocabulary words, cultural vocabulary is more vulnerable to change when language speakers no longer ﬁnd the information described by the words relevant to their present condition and/or when they come into contact with speakers of another language. Because of the paucity of published sources for coastal Guinea’s languages, it was necessary for me to collect cultural vocabulary lists of approximately three thousand words each in Nalu, Mbulungish, Mboteni, and Sitem, and smaller vocabulary lists in Landuma, Temne, Susu, Jalonke, and Balanta languages during the course of my ﬁeldwork.
Deep Roots: Rice Farmers in West Africa and the African Diaspora (Blacks in the Diaspora) by Edda L. Fields-Black