PIDGIN ENGLISH USAGE AND MEANING PLACEMENT IN SELECT PIDGIN ENGLISH PROGRAM ON RADIO “Dem Say Dem Say” on Wazobia FM

536

CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION

1.0 Background

Communication is exchanging of information either orally or written form. One of the essential elements of communication is feedback and effective communication. Communication is also a “process of using words, sounds, signs, or attitude to express or interchange information or to express your ideas, thoughts, feelings, etc., to someone else”.

In this study, communication is important because it is a way of reaching mutual understanding in which presenter not only exchange information but, it creates and share meaning. Language as a tool of communication, people share their experience and feelings through the easiest means they can be understood in their society and amongst themselves. It doesn’t matter the language used but all that matter is that it conveys the right message that was passed by the source.

The existence of Pidgin English began as a result of the colonial masters coming into Africa. Well respected philosophers noted that there is no language that is an island meaning that language can also develop through a pre-existed one (Akinfeleye, 2008). The existence of Pidgin English was through the English language. The use of Pidgin English began in the colonial era, when it was necessary for Africans to understand the language of the white man in order to be able to fit in the happenings of the society. At that period, if an African man gets to be able to understand the language of the white man, he is placed on a big position ahead other fellow Africans (Ihemere, 2006). As a result, a lot of African’s endeavor to try to fit in with the English language and during the process of change developed the Pidgin English.

The term Pidgin English refers to a language that is developed in the situation where the speakers of another language have to communicate but do not have a common language to share with another (Ndolo, 2005).

Pidgin English is a mixture of English and local languages which enables individuals who do not share a mutual language to communicate

(Akinfeleye, 2008) Stated that the Nigerian Pidgin English accommodates fun and creativity, therefore, it has been able to fill significant actual space of communication in Nigeria. All these must have been considered by Ihemere (2006) stating that the Pidgin English flourishes better being an inter-ethnic medium of communication. It is identified as being important to be adopted at some state or private broadcasting stations to give daily news in it and generally believed to be a very useful broadcasting language in the country. At recent times, job opportunities arise for those that are well spoken and fluent in the Pidgin English language. For instance there are job opportunities within the movies industry, newspapers published in Nigerian Pidgin, magazines and radio programs that are presented on Nigerian Pidgin entertainment. Generally, the Nigerian Pidgin is proposed as being a replacement to standard English broadcasting in Nigeria such that the uneducated people are able to survive the society, knowing very well that the language appeals to wider audience from all parts of the societies in the country (Deuber, 2005).

Therefore, since communication stands as a major life wire of all societies, at all sphere of the societal, cultural, industrial, educational, and all the levels needs information to optimally function in the society (Akinfeleye, 2008).

Therefore they must get some level of communication from the broadcasting media in a language that they can effectively understand. This forms the interest of this paper, to investigate

how the Nigerian Pidgin are interpreted and perceived by such group of listeners of dem say dem say on wazobia FM.

In the radio industry, Pidgin English is now commonly used. It is seen as a tool to disseminate information and generally to the target audience or consumers of the program. It helps the people that are less educated in Nigeria to grow and be aware of the recent occurrences in the country. More so, it also serves as an entertainment medium and generally, it serves as information forum

.

            Statement of the Problem

The study will examine the structure of Pidgin English usage as well as its effectiveness. In terms of evaluating its effectiveness, issues such as understanding, meaning placements, attendant problems would be considered. The study will evaluate spread and frequency of usage in select programs.

            Research Objectives

  1. To identify if radio audience prefers messages disseminated in Pidgin English better as aired in the radio program.
    1. To identify likely problem posed by use of Pidgin English in the select radio program.
  • To ascertain if the use of pidgin English in the select radio program is effective.
  • To determine whether there is correlation between meaning listeners attach to what they hear and disseminated.

            Research Question

Looking at the research objectives, the following questions are examined in this study:

  1. Do radio audiences prefer messages disseminated in Pidgin English as aired in the radio program?
    1. Are there likely problems with the use of Pidgin English in select radio program?
  • Is Pidgin English effective in select radio program?
  • Are there correlations in meaning between what the audience heard and what the presenter intended?

            Significance of Study

The study will contribute significantly to huge amount of available literatures on language and communications. It will provide important understanding of the manner in which programs are presented and should be presented for the best understanding of the audience in the radio broadcasting industry. It will help widen our knowledge to understanding other originated language like the Pidgin language academically. Not with standing were a person is from, academics broaden ones knowledge of understanding.

The understanding will equip students of communication in best practice towards understanding the meaning they attach to particular thing in communication.

            Scope of the Study

This study carried out around the area of communications dealing with communication theories and perspectives more related to language and recognized meaning towards information that is thought of. The study focuses on the Nigerian media specifically on the radio industry. The study also focuses on listeners of the program dem say dem say on Wazobia FM inside and outside AUN.

            Definition of Terms

  1. Effectiveness: If a radio program is productive, or yields results
  • Meaning placement: what meaning do people attach to what they hear on radio?
  • Prefer: what is more desired than the other.
  • Problems: these are circumstances to a particular meaning
  • Point of interaction: sound, music, stress, pattern, words, and effects that make listeners attend to the language.
    • Radio program: is a section of content planned for broadcast on radio. It may be a one-time dissemination or part of a occasionally regular sequence.

CHAPTER TWO LITERATURE

This chapter presents perspectives from previous studies and related studies to the topic of concern in this research. The study presents different perspectives of researcher’s directions, usage and adoption of Nigerian Pidgin English (NPE) in radio media and studies on how they impact understanding and usage by people within the country

  • Concept of Meaning Placement

Understanding the meaning of meaning placement is important in this research work and it would help look at various theorists work concerning what they had written down about meaning placement. Meaning placement is simply what meaning do people attach to what they hear on radio.

“Pidgin is a mixed language, and almost all languages come into being under conditions of communicating among people from different linguistic backgrounds”. (Akande & Salami, 2010) Made it clear that most of the existing pidgins advanced along the trade routes of the world, most particularly in those territory where the British, Spanish, Dutch, French and Portuguese built up their empire. Consequently, we know of Pidgin English, Pidgin French and other, based on the language that Pidgin is derived from. He estimated that above sixty million people understands or speak Pidgin throughout the world. Achoimre (2014) added that Pidgin normally arises in colonial conditions though it primarily begins as a trade language.

  • Language Use

Nigeria has a complex multilingual and multi-ethnic structure with various cultures. (Dada, 2012) Report that Nigerian Pidgin English (NPE) is the original language of more than 3 to 5 million people living across the Niger-Delta region, especially in Sapele, Warri, Port-Harcourt and Benin City.

According to BBC, Nigeria is estimated to have between three and five million people who primarily use Pidgin English in their day-to-day interactions. But it is said to be a second language to a much higher number of up to 75 million people in Nigeria alone – about half the population.

Amongst all ancestral languages, there are only three of the languages that are acknowledged as indigenous, national or major languages, which are Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa (Federal Republic of Nigeria’s Constitution). While considering the three indigenous languages as the major languages, all other indigenous languages are considered as minor languages and they seem to have little or no recognition in the country as the major languages.