Language, Culture and Communication: The Ibibio Worldview

Bassey A. Okon, Stella A. Ansa


Language, culture and communication are complementary elements/features in all societies. The Ibibio society which is the focus of this article describes the people as well as the language. The Ibibios are found in the south-south geopolitical zone of Nigeria. They number about four million people and speak the language-Ibibio-which belongs to the Lower Cross languages, a sub-family of the Benue Congo Phylum. The Ibibio worldview highlights the beliefs, the ideologies, values and the thought-pattern of the people. Using the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis with some modifications, we have shown that the worldview of a people is not determined only by the structure of a language. In addition, especially for the African (Ibibio) society, the worldview extends beyond the members of the society at that point in time but to those who are dead and the unborn. The data for this work were elicited through oral interview and participant observation using Ibibio proverbs among othersin order to posit answers to the objectives stated in this article.


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