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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The influence of Islam on the culture and language of the Dagomba of northern Ghana
Author:Salifu, Nantogma AlhassanISNI
Periodical:Maghreb Review (ISSN 0309-457X)
Geographic term:Ghana
Dagbani language
Islamic culture
Arabic language
culture contact
Abstract:A religion possessing a sacred scripture involves a relationship between the latter and the culture and language of the people who adopt the religion. The role of Arabic as a language of scripture in the lives of different peoples across the world is vast. It includes influences on the cultures and languages of the peoples among whom Islam became the major religion. In West Africa, Arabic borrowings in languages like Hausa, Fulani, Wolof and others like Kanuri, Mande and Bambara are well-known and properly documented. What is less well known is the influence of Arabic on other smaller languages like Dagbanli, the language of the Dagomba and one of the major languages in Ghana. This article gives an account of the introduction of Islam into Dagbon and describes the cultural influences of Islam on the Dagomba, including Islamic healing, education, ceremonies, the Muslim calendar and festivals. It also examines the linguistic influence of Arabic on the Dagbanli language, such as Arabic loanwords and expressions. App., bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]