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February 03 , 2008

Some Day Been Dey (RLE Folklore)

West African Pidgin Folktales


'Once upon a time' is the English translation of the title of this collection of twenty-eight Pidgin tales from Cameroon in West Africa, first published in 1979. These are richly illustrative of the various folklore genres of the region and are presented in a modified standard orthography, with an English translation facing the original Pidgin text. Notes are provided on each tale with the intention of illuminating some of their unique stylistic and linguistic patterns. The tales are often witty, never protracted, and are pleasurable in their own right. They also provide linguistic and folkloristic material not available elsewhere. In a lengthy introduction, Dr Todd discusses the history of Cameroon and the development and use of Pidgin English there. A simple grammar of Pidgin English is included to aid scholars not already familiar with the language to make full use of the Pidgin texts.

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