New Yoruba Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions: A New Mode of Communicating New Concepts and Ideas on Radio

Volume 15
Issue 4
Dayo Akanmu
New idioms and idiomatic expressions, which are modern stock expressions, constitute communicative clogs in Yorùbá routine discourses because of their semantic complexity and deviant nature. Existing studies have established their scope of usage in Yorùbá music but have hardly addressed their communicative adaptability in Yorùbá programmes on radio. This paper investigated issues expressed with these idioms and the context and strategies for using them in various Yorùbá programmes on radio. This is with a view to establishing their communicative and stylistic relevance in Yorùbá discourses. The paper adopted Mukarousky’s theory of Standard Language because of its capacity to explain the “differential specifica” between the language of everyday interaction and literary language. Six Yorùbá programmes were purposively selected for having sufficient usage of new idioms on these radio stations: 105.6 FM, Lagos; 107.5 FM, Lagos; 92.9 FM, Lagos 92.9 FM, Lagos; 99.2 FM, Ìbàdàn and 10.55 FM Ìbàdàn. Lagos and Ìbàdàn were chosen based on the urbanised nature of the two cities and constant usage of new idioms on the programmes. Data were subjected to pragmatic and stylistic analyses. In all these, certain unique issues were expressed: globalization, politics corruption and entertainment. Globalization, which peculiar to the electronic media, occurred in the context of mobile phoning/internet while politics, corruption and entertainment also appeared in electronic media revealing the contexts of political sloganeering, advertisement, information and fraud respectively. Nominalisation, composition and phonoeasthetic coinages were the linguistic strategies employed for the formation of new idioms in this paper. Nominalization occurred in one station in the contexts of cheating/corruption/choice of item (àgémáwọ/gẹ ́ ranmáwọ), composition occurred virtually in all the stations and was contextualised in advertisement/political sloganeering (jẹun sókè), entertainment/information (GSM lọmọ) and (já sí i). Phonoeasthetic coinages occurred in one station and was contextualised in fraud and information (yàúyàúù). New idioms and idiomatic expressions used to express socioeconomic issues in Yorùbá routine communication occurred in mediated and non-mediated contexts on radio and were conveyed through nominalization, compounding and phonoeasthetic coinages. These idioms reflect dynamism and modernity-constrained stylistic choices in Yorùbá.

Key words: New idioms, Yorùbá programmes, radio, globalization, linguistic strategies