163 pages, 1 b/w map, 14 tables
Nsong, Ngong, Mpiin, Mbuun and Hungan are Bantu languages spoken in and around the city of Kikwit in Badundu province, DR Congo. These minority languages have been gradually abandoned by speakers, who instead favour the country’s national and official languages.
This book is a collection of traditional knowledge on the plants, animals, and fungi of the region. It describes various uses – nutritional, medicinal, artisanal, meteorological, ritual – of these organisms. Such uses have been tested in these societies and may also benefit others if scientists are able to explore them. Unfortunately, such knowledge is fast disappearing, hence the importance of this lexicon.
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Joseph Koni Muluwa, born in Kikwit, DR Congo in 1964, holds a doctorate in languages and letters from the Université libre de Bruxelles (2010).
He began specialising in the relationships between linguistics and biodiversity in 2005 and devoted several years of study to the subject. He also worked as a post-doctoral researcher at the Royal Museum for Central Africa in Tervuren until 2012. At present, Koni Muluwa is connected with Ghent University, where his work focuses on endangered Bantu languages. His areas of speciality are comparative and historical linguistics and the documentation of endangered African traditional cultural knowledge.