Paradigm Shifts in the Yoruba Anthroponyms: A Critical Discourse Analysis on Yoruba Reincanated-Child`s Names (Published)
The main thrust of the paper is the illumination of the interactions between the language use and the Yoruba cultural anthropology as attested to by a set of Yoruba names known as the àbíkú (reincarnated child`s) names. The names are considered as registers because they aptly identify discourse that occurs in particular recurrent situations within the contexts of the people’s social experience and beliefs. The factors that make the usage of these names to become atrophied are identified to illustrate the paradigm shifts in the people`s cultural anthropology. In doing this, the sociolinguistic values of Yoruba names are expatiated and categorized to elicit the contemporary perception of the names. The study found that àbíkú names stand out linguo-culturally in Yoruba onomastics and are significantly complex to be merely positioned within either the purview of core linguistics or socio-religious perspectives alone as their expositions also include anthropological identities and situational parameters of variation. Among other things, this verbal text provides unique opportunities for the people to externalize social- psychology to capture the name giver`s emotions and in the process, aptly casts identifiable marks on the bearer, thus stratifying the society in a way. Conclusively it is contended that this brand of name-words represent the signposts which encode the social perceptions on certain individuals and episodes of enduring identities in the past which have now been regrettably eroded and debased by critical waves of the so-called modernity.