Documentation of cultural heritage in three endangered Bantu languages of the Kwilu (DR Congo). Ngong, Nsong and Nsambaan

Documentation de l’héritage culturel dans trois langues bantu en danger du Kwilu (RD Congo). Ngong, nsong et nsambaan
Begin - Einde 
2012 - 2015 (afgewerkt)



This endangered language documentation project is funded by the DoBeS program of the Volkswagen foundation through a 3-year grant (2012-2015) and involves collaboration between Ghent University, Kinshasa University and the Humboldt University of Berlin. Nsambaan, Nsong and Ngong are three closely related Bantu languagesspoken in the vicinity of Kikwit Town (Kwilu district, Bandundu Province, DR Congo). Due to increasing urbanisation and growing popularity of Kikongo and Lingala, the survival of these rural languages is severely endangered. This project builds on a pilot PhD study which focused on the names and popular uses of animals, plants and mushrooms in five Bantu languages of the Kwilu (Hungan, Mbuun, Mpiin, Ngong and Nsong), of which two endangered languages will be further documented here, i.e. Nsong and Ngong. The same effort to document endangered popular biological knowledgesystems will be extended to a third hitherto undocumented threatened language, i.e. Nsambaan. We aim at a more systematic documentation of the three languages in order to produce a representative sound and film archive of diverse communicative events, especially genres of oral literature, which will be transcribed and annotated and serve for future corpus-based lexical and grammatical descriptions.




Externe medewerkers

Timothée Mukash Kalel

Université de Kinshasa

Tom Güldemann

Humboldt University Berlin