The representation of vowel duration in civili dictionaries

Ndinga-Koumba-Binza H.S. ; Roux J.C. (2009)


Civili is a developing language spoken in Gabon and in a few neighbouring countries. This article focuses on the representation of vowel duration in Civili dictionaries. The representation in these dictionaries is inconsistent. In the article, it is argued that this inconsistency stems from a twofold phonetic-phonological issue, which has implications for the word writing system of the language. The article provides an assessment of the existing orthography proposals for Civili and offers materials for a new proposal that takes the vowel duration issue into account. Subsequently, it is recommended that vowel duration be represented by a diaeresis above the vowel for both the orthography and the lemmatization in reference works such as dictionaries and school and religious textbooks.

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