Locating Place Naming in the Zambian Constitution:

a Critical Toponymies Perspective

  • Khama Hang'ombe University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Keywords: The Constitution of Zambia; culture, history, linguistic hegemony, national symbols


This paper examines the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Act No. 2 of 2016, the prime aim being to establish the location of place naming and place names in it. The point of departure in this study is an appreciation that place naming and place names themselves is a very sensitive and important process, capable of being utilised as a tool to repress various aspects of people such as culture, history and identity by those who are privileged to nominate places. This appreciation is weighted equally by an understanding that not every person or group of people have the privilege to nominate places. Equally, the study appreciates that a national constitution is a very sensitive and important document as it serves as a guide on what should and should not be done by people in the country. Therefore, it is inevitable that place naming should be provided for in any well-meaning national constitution if that constitution is to be taken and regarded in its purported spirit of importance and protectiveness.