Language Policy and Oppression in South Africa

South Africa is a multi-lingual society that has some unique linguistic problems because of its policy of apartheid. On one level, there are tensions between its two official language groups, Afrikaans and English. On another level, there are linguistic tensions between the ethnic Europeans and the black majority, mostly in regard to language instruction in schools. This issue was the spark that ignited the tragic Soweto riots in 1976. To understand this event and the language issue as it stands today, some background of the English vs. Afrikaans conflict is necessary. Cultural Survival, 8 February, 2010. Read more…

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