‘Khoisan languages: are they really ancient?’
It is a widely-held and popular belief that the diverse Khoisan languages must be ancient relics, left over perhaps from a time even further back than the late Stone Age, but a rational examination of the linguistic evidence suggests a different picture.
Our guest speaker on Thursday 20 June in Somerset West is linguist, researcher and writer Dr Menán du Plessis, an extraordinary associate professor in the department of linguistics at Stellenbosch University.
Menán will provide evidence which suggests scenarios that factor in social roles and relations, rather than obsolete notions of ‘race’, and more in keeping with what we actually know about languages and societies in Africa.
Menán received her PhD from UCT in 2009 for her thesis in Khoisan linguistics, and has been engaged ever since in research, writing and teaching. She has conducted fieldwork to obtain recordings from two of the last speakers of Kora, and recently completed a book on this nearly extinct Khoisan language of the early Cape and the Gariep.
You are welcome to bring a guest.
Further information and venue details from the Winelands secretary, Yvonne Steyn.