CHARACTER DEFINITION AND IDENTITY: THE CASE OF CODE-SWITCHING AND CODE-MIXING IN AMERICANAH AND HALF OF A YELLOW SUN

Magdaline Chioma Akaeze, Clementina Ukamaka Onyeka, Chinedu C. Ezebube, Christiana Chinazo Uzokwe

Abstract


Understanding how code-switching and code-mixing intersects with character definition and identity may not be easily overlooked in a multidisciplinary study of this nature. Code-switching and code-mixing are usually common in multilingual societies. The importance of these linguistics activities, particularly in communication, calls attention to the need for more research into these occurrences. Communication, as we all know, is inevitable in building strong human relationships. In the study of character definition and identity, through the lens of code-switching and code-mixing, pertinent intriguing questions to ask bother on how language use shapes the representation of characters, their relationships with others, and their self-perception within various contexts. The objectives of this study are to investigate the social and cultural implications of code-switching on character identity and explore the narrator’s identification through the same style in chosen texts. In order to tackle the set objectives of this study, the scholars followed the qualitative technique of content analysis in the study of the chosen literary texts. There was intense observation of some library and internet print materials. The theoretical frame work of the study is drawn mainly from the views of Accommodation theory of Code Switching and code mixing. The study discovers that the act of code switching/code mixing could aid in the identification and revelation of the social, cultural and personal traits of characters in a text. The same language act could also be a means of capturing and defining the narrator of the text.   It is recommended that African writers writing in their lingua franca can adopt the use of this device in projecting their cultural values, identity, ethics and language to a wider readership and accessibility.


Keywords


Code Switching, Code Mixing, Character, Identity, African Literature.

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