What is this? Is It Code Switching, Code Mixing or Language Alternating?
AbstractCode switching and code mixing are commonly used throughout the world. Both occur when two languages are used spontaneously in one clause or utterance. Code switching is also a complex process, which involves different levels of switching or mixing in accordance to with proficiency in the languages used. The aim of this paper is to explore the use of code switching and code mixing in South African languages, with the focus on African languages. The important question in this paper, is why do people code switch or code mix unconsciously? In my observations, there appears to be a general tendency to code switch or code mix irrespective of their education, age and culture. Types of code switching, such as the intersentential, intrasentential and extrasentential, will be discussed and also be substantiated with examples. The distinction between code switching and language alternation and the reasons as well as the causes of code switching will be discussed. Data, that was collected from my observations, as a researcher, will be analysed. Data has been extracted from my social and professional environments through the mediums of discourse and email correspondence with friends, colleagues and students of the University of South Africa. In this paper, the sole focus will be on orthographic code switching and code mixing.
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