Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Language rights in South Africa
"In South Africa where the struggle for language rights was intrinsically bound up with the struggle for human rights, I could not but be aware that language is fundamentally tied to questions of power". This seems like a quite obvious statement, not only in South Africa, but globally (somewhat). In South Africa though, if English and Afrikaans were the Official Languages of South Africa, and Afrikaans was seen as a language of apartheid and oppression....what's wrong with South Africans speaking English? I understand that there are now 11 African languages that are officially recognized, but if English is/was an official language in South Africa that didn't align itself with Apartheid, why does Access to the English language have to be "tempered". I'm definitely not an expert, in fact this Janks article was the first that I've read about these language struggles, however it seems that this article is being somewhat unfair to the English language.