Communicative Repertoires in Advertising Space in Lesotho: The Translanguaging and Commodification Nexus

  • Henry Amo Mensah
Part of the Multilingual Education book series (MULT, volume 28)


In this chapter, the concepts of translanguaging and commodification are examined as twin indicators of how commercial entities deploy the language resources available to them for commercial gain. It is argued that the persuasive power of advertising discourse in Lesotho lies in its ability to mobilise a variety and diversity of communicative repertoires such as images, objects and texts to encourage the audience to purchase the products and services on offer. Translanguaging transnational advertising space is conceptualised as a meeting place for the accommodation of a variety of communicative resources. The selected advertisements in this chapter straddle the services sector, namely, telecommunications, banking, and retail. The literature review covers the recent and extant literature on translanguaging and linguistic commodification. The study employs Critical Discourse Analysis as a method to explore, describe and interpret how a variety of communicative repertoires are used in advertising space in Lesotho. It is clear from the analyses that the advertisements that have been studied mediate and (re)negotiate cultural diversity through translanguaging and linguistic commodification. The chapter concludes that the different linguistic resources deployed in the advertising space in Lesotho are artefacts and productive signs with important economic and social consequences. Finally, it is posited that translanguaging changes the way the public appreciates and deploys their multilingual resources in different spaces of multilingualism, and that new social spaces emerge through translanguaging in linguistic superdiverse settings.


Communicative repertoires Advertising space Commodification Translanguaging Superdiversity Globalisation 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henry Amo Mensah
    • 1
  1. 1.English Department, National University of LesothoRomaLesotho

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