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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:History and Imagination: Swahili Literature and Resistance to German Language Imperialism in Tanzania, 1885-1910
Author:Pike, Charles
Year:1986
Periodical:International Journal of African Historical Studies
Volume:19
Issue:2
Pages:201-233
Language:English
Geographic terms:Tanzania
Germany
Subjects:colonialism
language policy
Swahili
literature
History and Exploration
Literature, Mass Media and the Press
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/219426
Abstract:This essay examines the broad outlines of German language policy against the background of armed and moral resistance of the peoples of East Africa to the German presence. The spirit of this resistance is revealed in the Swahili literature of the period. Swahili was never simply a lingua franca, but often also the externalization of cultural values antithetical to those of Germany. German misunderstandings of Swahili culture as an African culture led German colonial officials to underestimate the central, unifying role played by Swahili language and thought. It was ultimately the older, indigenous language and culture which effectively overwhelmed and dominated the younger, myopic, foreign culture. Notes.
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