<i>Camfrang forever!</i> Metacommunication in and about Camfranglais


  • Gardy Stein-Kanjora University of Hamburg, Germany




youth language, metacommunication, language manipulation, Camfranglais, Cameroon


This paper explores aspects of the deliberate usage, transformation and status-negotiation of Camfranglais in Cameroon. There are many examples of metacommunication among speakers: heated discussions of whether or not this variety should be promoted (even to the status of a national language), lamentations about why teachers and parents dislike and ?ght it so much, and even word planning sessions are not unusual. Based on the analysis of several internet forums as well as material from my own ?eld-research, I examine the close relationship many young Cameroonians – especially those living outside of Cameroon – establish between the use of Camfranglais and their Cameroonian identity. It will be shown that the linguistic awareness of young, urban Camfranglophones is very high, setting it apart from other youth language phenomena worldwide.

Author Biography

Gardy Stein-Kanjora, University of Hamburg, Germany

Gardy Stein-Kanjora is currently completing her Ph.D. at the Department of Asian and African Languages at the University of Hamburg, Germany. Her primary research interests include African sociolinguistics, language variation and change, code-switching as well as pidgin and creole studies. Her main publications include ‘Parler comme ça, c’est vachement cool!’ or How dynamic language loyalty can overcome ‘Resistance from above’, Sociologus 58(2) (2008). She also works as a freelance author for various magazines (online and print) about music and culture.



How to Cite

Stein-Kanjora, G. (2016). <i>Camfrang forever!</i> Metacommunication in and about Camfranglais. Sociolinguistic Studies, 10(1-2), 261–289. https://doi.org/10.1558/sols.v10i1-2.27951