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This book fills a gap in the literature as it uniquely approaches onomastics from the perspective of both anthropology and linguistics. It addresses names and cultures from 16 countries and five continents, thus offering readers an opportunity to comprehend and compare names and naming practices across cultures. The chapters presented in this book explore the cultural significance of personal names, naming ceremonies, conventions and practices. They illustrate how these names and practices perform certain culture-specific functions, such as religion, identity and social activity. Some chapters address the socio-political significance of personal names and their expression of self and otherness. The book also links the linguistic structure of personal names to culture by looking at their morphology, syntax and semantics. It is divided into four sections: Section 1 demonstrates how personal names perform human culture, Section 2 focuses on how personal names index socio-political transitioning, Section 3 demonstrates religious values in personal names and naming, and Section 4 links linguistic structure and analysis of personal names to culture and heritage.
Sambulo Ndlovu, Great Zimbabwe University, Masvingo, Zimbabwe and Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany.
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