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Secret Manipulations is the first comprehensive study of African register variation, polylectality, and derived languages. Focusing on a specific form of language change-deliberate manipulations of a language by its speakers-it provides a new approach to local language ideologies and concepts of grammar and metalinguistic knowledge.
Anne Storch concentrates on case studies from Nigeria, Uganda, Sudan, the African diaspora, and 16th century Europe. In these cases, language manipulation varies with social and cultural contexts, and is almost always done in secret. At the same time, this manipulation can be an act of subversion and an expression of power, and it is often central to the construction of social norms, as it constructs oppositions and gives marginalized people a chance to articulate themselves. This volume illustrates how manipulated languages are constructed, how they are used, and how they wield power.