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SIL Electronic Survey Reports 2010-011

A sociolinguistic survey of the Boulba (Notre) language area

Authors  Boafo, Ebenezer
Kluge, Angela

This paper presents a sociolinguistic survey conducted in the Boulba speech community (Gur language family) of Benin. The survey was designed to help SIL-Togo/Benin administrators decide whether to pursue a distinctly Boulba language development project or whether these communities could benefit from regional literacy efforts, planned by SIL Togo/Benin, in a language other than Boulba, specifically Biali and Waama.

Through the administration of community and individual interviews, the survey researchers collected data concerning tested levels of comprehension as well as reported levels of multilingualism, language-learning environments, language use in various domains both public and private, language attitudes toward both written and oral forms of Boulba as well as of Biali and Waama, and education and literacy levels. Special attention was given to indicators of language shift.

The results are given for each of the above mentioned categories. Overall, they show high levels of tested comprehension of Biali and of Waama. Reported bilingualism in Biali is also high, while it is lower in Waama. There are no indications of language shift.

  A sociolinguistic survey of the Boulba (Notre) language area
Published  2010
Language  Notre [bly]
Country  Benin
Subjects  Language surveys
Keywords  Sociolinguistics; Language surveys