14 May Facts about Bangandu language(Last Updated On: May 13, 2021)
Do you have any idea how fast the world is losing languages? You might be surprised but we are losing one language every two weeks. Yes, this is an alarming situation for us! Have you ever heard Bangandu Language, no?
Well, the Bangandu language is one of the endangered languages that is considered as the threatened one, on a global scale. It was spoken in Cameroon, the country of the Central African Republic.
Let’s discuss the details and all the facts about Bangandu Language.
Historical Background of Bangandu Language
Bangandu is also known as Bagando, Bangando, Bangantu, Bung language, Bamum language, or Southern Bangantu. People in Cameroon speak Bangandu. The language family of it includes Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Condo, Savannas, and Gbaya. Moreover, Bangandu is considered one of the Gbaya languages of Cameroon and the Central African Republic. Today, it has approximately 2700 to 3500 mother-tongue speakers. The language code of the Bangandu ISO 639 – 3 language code is “bgf”.
Facts About Bangandu Language
The native speakers of the Bangando language live in the regions of Southern Cameroon. To learn or study the Bangandu language, it is classified as specific field-dependent and relies on a particular level of field dependence as authors like J.W. Berry, S.H. Irvine, and E.G. Hunt mentioned in their book named “Indigenous Cognition: Functioning in Cultural Context”. Field dependence language learning includes the total envelopment of a person into the community of which the language is spoken. Moreover, the authors find out the lack of education facing by education indigenous speakers to move out of the Bangandu community.
What are the Languages other than Bangandu in Cameroon?
Over more than 250 languages are spoken in Cameroon, but according to some reports it has around 600 languages. The languages of Cameroon are classified as:
- 55 Afro-Asiatic languages
- 2 Nil-Saharan languages
- 4 Ubangian languages
- 169 Niger-Congo languages
One of the famous Cameroon languages is Duru. It is a group of Savanna Language. Duru is spoken in Northern Cameroon and Eastern Nigeria. It has a morphological similarity between Samba Duru and Central Gur languages.
Tivoid Language is also one of the languages of Cameroon. It is spoken by the people of the South-west region in Manyu.
Gbanu language is spoken in the West of the Central African Republic. It is famous because it has 14 vowels.
Today English and French are the official languages or dialects of Cameroon. The fact is that only a few people in Cameroon speak both French and English, many speak neither. The government made efforts to raise the level of French and English i.e. they built many bilingual schools.
What is the Culture of the Bangandu Community?
The community of Bangandu follows the culture of Cameroon. Let’s have a look at the culture of Cameroon because it greatly affects the language.
Well, Cameroon is located at the edge of central and western Africa. Its capital is Yaounde, located in the South-Central part of the country. Its ethnic and diverse population is mostly from western Africa.
Ethnic group in Cameroon
The diverse population of Cameroon has around 250 ethnic groups, and these ethnic groups are part of five religious or cultural groups.
These groups are:
- Western Highlander, also known as grass fielders, includes The Bamileke, Bamoun, and various groups from the northwest.
- Coastal tropical forest people and it includes the Bassa, Doula, and many smaller groups in the southwest.
- Southern tropical forest people, this group includes the Beti, Beulu, Fang, and Pygmies.
- Muslims of the northern semi-arid regions and central highlands, it includes the Fulani.
- The Kirdi, non-Muslims peoples of the northern desert and central highlands.
There is freedom of religion in Cameroon. About 40% of the people belong to indigenous beliefs, 40% are Christians and the rest of 20% are Muslims. The north part of Cameroon consists of Christians while the south part of the country has a Muslim community. Some religious minorities report issues related to their right in the country.
Family of Cameroon
Cameroonians have extended family as the social system. It includes grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins. They considered them as close family members. People are recognized by their extended families. Cameroonians don’t believe in nepotism. It’s a part of their cultural context. This is because they want to work with those they trust.
Cameroonians are mostly organizing themselves into small groups or communities, known as associations. Every individual considers themselves as the son and daughter of that association. Also, check out our latest blog on Pashayi people.
How is Cameroon saving their threatened languages?
A language becomes endangered when it starts losing its speakers or when the native speakers neglect their mother tongue and switch to some other language, mostly the dominant languages spoken by powerful groups. Most languages are threatened by external factors which include religion, culture, economic or military. Some internal factors also cause a language to disappear such as the negative behavior of the community for its native language. Linguistic diversity is also a cause for language extinction.
Cameroon reintroduces their mother tongue languages in the school to save them from extinction. But there is a great diversity of linguists in the country. The Bangandu language is considered the religious language of Cameroon and most of the regional languages are neglected which in turn become one of the causes of extinction. Moreover, it is very difficult or almost impossible to save Bangandu because it can’t be taught in schools.
Why do People shift to Dominant Languages?
In today’s world, it becomes a trend to shift native language to the dominant languages of the world i.e., English, French or Chinese are dominant dialects. Several factors make people switch their languages.
Economic Factor: It is the most important factor because people need to learn other languages to work with foreigners. Sometimes people ever change their location to get jobs. For example, in the US or UK people need to learn the English language to be a good competitor in the job market. This results in bilingualism. People also need to shift their languages for perfect social well-being.
The social factor is also one of the biggest reasons for a language shift. The pressure of a society conceives people to learn the dominant language. In most cases, the person who speaks English will be supposed to have a successful career in the future.
A quick shift happens when individuals are on edge to ‘get on’ in a general public where information on the subsequent language is essential for progress. Political factor forces on language shift. In a multilingual country, the authority typically picks one language as the most widely used language to bind together different sorts of ethnic groups. Thus, the quantity of ethnic language speakers diminishes.
Language Attitude and values:
Attitudes and values play an important role in language shift. It happens when people don’t value the ethnic languages
It also matters a lot in language shift. People within a country have different patterns of languages. The difference between the languages of one region from other causes the people to shift their languages.
The world is in an alarming situation of language excitation. Even predictions from resources tell us that we will lose half of the world’s languages within a century.
We can sum up by saying that if you want that your native language will not disappear in the future, the least you can do is to have a positive attitude toward your heart language and spread the message to people. So that at least you will have a name in language helpers.