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African cultural linguistics

General data

Course ID: 3600-AF-ACL-OG
Erasmus code / ISCED: 09.3 Kod klasyfikacyjny przedmiotu składa się z trzech do pięciu cyfr, przy czym trzy pierwsze oznaczają klasyfikację dziedziny wg. Listy kodów dziedzin obowiązującej w programie Socrates/Erasmus, czwarta (dotąd na ogół 0) – ewentualne uszczegółowienie informacji o dyscyplinie, piąta – stopień zaawansowania przedmiotu ustalony na podstawie roku studiów, dla którego przedmiot jest przeznaczony. / (unknown)
Course title: African cultural linguistics
Name in Polish: African cultural linguistics
Organizational unit: Faculty of Oriental Studies
Course groups: (in Polish) Przedmioty 4EU+ (z oferty jednostek dydaktycznych)
General university courses
General university courses
General university courses in the humanities
ECTS credit allocation (and other scores): (not available) Basic information on ECTS credits allocation principles:
  • the annual hourly workload of the student’s work required to achieve the expected learning outcomes for a given stage is 1500-1800h, corresponding to 60 ECTS;
  • the student’s weekly hourly workload is 45 h;
  • 1 ECTS point corresponds to 25-30 hours of student work needed to achieve the assumed learning outcomes;
  • weekly student workload necessary to achieve the assumed learning outcomes allows to obtain 1.5 ECTS;
  • work required to pass the course, which has been assigned 3 ECTS, constitutes 10% of the semester student load.

view allocation of credits
Language: English
Type of course:

general courses


Remote learning

Short description: (in Polish)

The course focuses on the interdependencies between language and culture as investigated within theoretical frameworks of Cognitive and Cultural Linguistics and with reference to languages and cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa. Course requirements include active participation in class (presentation and discussion of assigned readings) and presentation of preliminary results of own research on a specific issue in a chosen African language.

Full description: (in Polish)

The course aims at discussing basic concepts and research methods used in a broadly understood model of Cultural Linguistics, with a special focus on methodological assumptions of Cognitive Linguistics (motivated character of linguistic sign, categorization based on prototypicality and family resemblance, experiential base of conceptualization). Different cultural models reflected in languages (and conditioned by conceptualization processes, such as metaphor and metonymy) will be analyzed using examples of chosen topics (e.g. spatial orientation, kinship terms, terms of address, honorifics, expression of emotions). Illustrative material will come from languages and cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa.The students will conduct their own research project on a specific issue in an African language.

Bibliography: (in Polish)

Book chapters and articles chosen according to students’ interests, e.g.

Dimmendaal, Gerrit J. 2015. The Leopard’s Spot. Leiden: Brill.

Heine, Bernd. 1997. Cognitive Foundations of Grammar. New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Kövecses, Zoltán. 2005. Metaphor in Culture: Universality and Variation. Cambridge: Cambrigde University Press.

Kraska-Szlenk, Iwona. 2014. Semantics of Body Part Terms: General Trends and a Case Study of Swahili. LINCOM Studies in Semantics 6. München: LINCOM Europa.

Kraska-Szlenk, Iwona. 2018. “Address inversion in Swahili: Usage patterns, cognitive motivation and cultural factors”. Cognitive Linguistics 29/3: 545-584.

Kraska-Szlenk, Iwona. 2018. “Kinship metaphors in Swahili language and culture”. Studies in African Languages and Cultures, Vol. 52: 49-71.

Lakoff, George. 1987. Women, Fire and Dangerous Things: What Categories Reveal about the Mind. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press.

Lakoff, George and Mark Johnson. 1980. Metaphors We Live By. Chicago/London: The University of Chicago Press.

Palmer, Gary B. 1996. Toward a Theory of Cultural Linguistics. University of Texas Press.

Sharifian, Farzad. 2011. Cultural Conceptualizations and Language. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Sharifian, Farzad. 2017 (ed.). Advances in Cultural Linguistics. London/New York/Singapore: Springer.

Sharifian, Farzad. 2017. “Cultural Linguistics and linguistic relativity”. Language Sciences 59: 83-92.

Sharifian, Farzad. 2017. Cultural Linguistics: Cultural Conceptualisations and Language. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Vossen, Rainer and Gerrit J. Dimmendaal (eds.). 2020. Oxford Handbook of African Languages.

Wierzbicka, Anna. 1997. Understanding Cultures Through Their Key Words. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Wolff, Ekkehard H. (eds.) 2019. The Cambridge Handbook of African inguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Learning outcomes: (in Polish)

- has in-depth and detailed knowledge (including terminology, theory and methodology) in linguistic studies that has its application to cultural studies (K_W01)

- has extended knowledge of particular problems pertaining to cultures in a comparative perspective (K_W02)

- knows and understands advanced analysis and interpretation methods of various products of culture characteristic of chosen theories within the scope of linguistics (K_W06)

- knows and understands the rules of copyright and intellectual property management (K_W11)

- can acquire knowledge independently and enhance research skills as well as develop abilities to build a professional career (K_U03)

- can carry out a critical analysis and interpretation of language data in a way which is appropriate to cultural linguistics (K_U10)

- has superior skill at presenting detailed aspects within the scope of cultural issues of a chosen region (K_U18)

- has superior skill in substantive argumentation with the use of other authors’ views (K_U20)

- can actively cooperate and work in a group as well as forge relationships and build social relations (K_K02)

- is open to new ideas and trends as well as cultural diversity (K_K05)

- understands and appreciates the value of tradition and cultural heritage of one’s own country and of a chosen region (K_K08)

Assessment methods and assessment criteria: (in Polish)

Course requirements include:

- class attendance

- discussing assigned readings

- oral presentation of one article/book chapter

- a brief (oral and written) report on results of own research on a specific issue

Practical placement: (in Polish)


This course is not currently offered.
Course descriptions are protected by copyright.
Copyright by University of Warsaw.
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