Congratulations to Dr. Nahounnou Angenor YAO, Lecturer at the University Preparatory Program, who successfully defended his Doctorate thesis at the Alassane OUATTARA University in Bouake, Côte d’Ivoire. The defense committee was composed of three professors from two Ivorian universities and two professors from Senegal and South Africa. The topic of the research was “On the Codification of Biblical and Medical Terms in Four Ivorian Languages: A Translation Perspective”.

The study, which is restricted to the Old Testament (Bible) and HIV/AIDS terminology, was carried out through a survey of terms created to deal with these subjects in the four major linguistic families of Côte d’Ivoire. Various strategies were adopted, including word formation as well as adoption of known items (egg, insect, etc.), to refer to unknown elements such as “virus”. After describing the various processes of new term creation, he asked the question: are these items fully integrated into the language or do they remain marginal? This study suggests various methods for translating Bible and medical concepts into West African languages.

Prior to his Doctorate, Dr. YAO graduated from the Félix Houphouët-Boigny University in Abidjan with a Bachelor’s degree in German, specializing in Linguistics. His focus is on translation and documentation of unwritten languages. He worked previously in an aviation company and got involved in various translation projects (English-German-French).  In addition to teaching general and business English as well as German in high schools and universities, he was interested in such languages as Arabic and Modern Hebrew. He contributed to five articles and communications.