Although it is a sufficient medium which has been used for almost 200 years to pen some of the most celebrated African literature (such as Thomas Mofolo's Chaka), the current Sesotho orthography does exhibit certain (phonological) deficiencies.
One problem is that, although the spoken language has at least seven contrasting vowel phonemes, these are only written using the five vowel letters of the standard Latin alphabet. The letter "e" represents the vowels /ɪ/, /ɛ/, and /e/, and the letter "o" represents the vowels /ʊ/, /ɔ/, and /o/. Not only does this result in numerous homographs, there is also some overlap between many distinct morphemes and formatives, as well as the final vowels of Sesotho verbs in various tenses and moods.
Another problem is the complete lack of tone marking even though Sesotho is a grammatical tone language. Not only does this also result in numerous homographs, it may also cause problems in situations where the only difference between grammatical constructions is the tones of a few key syllables in two otherwise similar sounding phrases. That this would be a rather difficult issue to tackle is revealed by the fact that very few of the large number of written Niger–Congo languages have any consistently used tone marking schemes, even though some of their tonal systems are much more complex than that of Sesotho.
The following not too unlikely example is illustrative of both these issues:
- ke ye ke reke dijo, either I often buy food, or so I may go and buy food
The first meaning is rendered if the phrase is composed of a Group III deficient verb (-ye, indicating habitual actions) followed by a verb in the perfect subjunctive mood. The second verb's mood is indicated by the low toned subjectival concord as well as the /ɪ/ final vowel. The second meaning is rendered by basically using two normal verbs in the subjunctive mood (with high toned subjectival concords and /ɛ/ final vowels) with the actions following each other.
Read more about this topic: Sotho Orthography
Other articles related to "limitations":
... asserted that limitations on rights must be motivated by an objective of sufficient importance ...
... Several publications have commented on limitations given to pre-release reviewers by Konami, including discussion on the length of cutscenes and size of the PS3 installation ... These limitations resulted in Electronic Gaming Monthly delaying its review ... either, claiming Konami have withheld review code because of non-compliance with the limitations ...
... Airline Policies - FRMP, Fairness These include Flight Time Limitations (FTL) - Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly and Yearly Flight Duty Period Limitations (FDP) - Daily, Weekly, Monthly ... Separation of assignments, base allocation of crew members, Reserve limitations, Crew Training Requirements ...
... Due to the limitations of the CD-i, several features could not be included in the game, such as large numbers of sprites on the screen, Mode 7 and many visual ...
... findings (strengths and weaknesses), status of the hypothesis, limitations, and recommendations, implications, or applications ... Limitations will be discussed such as the statistical framework or design errors made in the beginning ... The researcher should also present the limitations or weaknesses of the study ...
Famous quotes containing the word limitations:
“The limitations of pleasure cannot be overcome by more pleasure.”
—Mason Cooley (b. 1927)
“Growing up means letting go of the dearest megalomaniacal dreams of our childhood. Growing up means knowing they cant be fulfilled. Growing up means gaining the wisdom and skills to get what we want within the limitations imposed by realitya reality which consists of diminished powers, restricted freedoms and, with the people we love, imperfect connections.”
—Judith Viorst (20th century)
“No man could bring himself to reveal his true character, and, above all, his true limitations as a citizen and a Christian, his true meannesses, his true imbecilities, to his friends, or even to his wife. Honest autobiography is therefore a contradiction in terms: the moment a man considers himself, even in petto, he tries to gild and fresco himself.”
—H.L. (Henry Lewis)