International Journal of Language & Linguistics

ISSN 2374-8850 (Print), 2374-8869 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/ijll

Language Maintenance among Minority Languages with Special Reference to Leya Language of Chief Mukuni, Southern Province
Kavwaya Sunwell

Minority languages die when they are competing with major languages. Major languages have a large speaker number covering a big geographical area where as minority languages are spoken by minority within a country. In Zambia, seven languages have been given official status as languages of wider Communication. These are Tonga, Nyanja, Bemba, Lozi, Luvale, Kaonde and Lunda. A research was conducted to investigate whether Tonga, the regional lingua franca and English, the nation’s official language, were threatening Leya, being a minority language. The findings were that Leya language is not threatened with extinction because Leyas are proud of their language and desire to promote it. The research also showed that the Leyas preferred the use of Leya to English as a medium of instruction, do not support the use of other prestigious languages in public domains, have a positive attitude towards it so it is unlikely to die.

Full Text: PDF