An investigation of lexical variation in the spoken lubukusu in Bungoma county Kenya
Masika, Mary Nasambu
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The proposed study will investigate lexical variation 111 the spoken Lubukusu in Bungoma County, Kenya. Specifically, the proposed study will investigate instances of lexical variation in the spoken language of Lubukusu speakers in Bungorna North Sub-County and establish the correlation between the lexical variation and two social variables: age and gender. Many studies in variation have been done in the West, a number have been done in Africa in general and specifically in Kenya. These studies have shown that variation exists in all languages at all levels: pronunciation (accent), word choice (lexicon) and preferences of certain grammatical patterns. This variation causes difficulties in comprehension, thus it is hoped that by seeking to establish and document lexical variation in Lubukusu, thc proposed study will help reduce comprehension problems by creating awareness of the variant forms used by people of different social groups. Although other forms of variation may exist in Lubukusu, the proposed study will limit itself to investigating variation at the lexical level on ly. It is hoped that the findings ofthis study will contribute to the knowledge gap and add value to the current literature on language variation. The study will be guided by Labov's Variationist theory. A Correlation research design will be adopted in the proposed study and the target population will be the entire population of about 320,300 people in Bungoma North Sub-County. Out of this population, a sample size of 24 speakers will be selected using judgmental sampling and social network techniques so as to ensure each of the four major divisions in the district are represented by at' least six respondents at the same time ensuring the amount of data collected is meaningfully manageable. The 24 selected subjects will be interviewed and tape recorded to provide background information and the required linguistic data. The validity of the interview schedule as a data collection tool for the study will be ensured by expert analysis and its reliability will be ensured by piloting. The feedback from the pilot stud" will inform the refinement of the interview schedule to enable it yield the required information. The data that will be collected by use of an interview schedule and tape recording will be sorted, coded, entered into the computer and analyzed using Statistical Package for the SOCi:ll Sciences (SPSS) version 20.0.0 for windows. The meaning of what wi It be observed wi II he presented in numbers, figures, frequencies, percentages and description.