language planning in south africa

Good Essays
Topics: South Africa
Language policy and planning in South Africa must be seen within the context of the country 's sociolinguistic complexity and the relationship between language and a number of serious problems in the country. South Africa 's sociolinguistic complexity is a function of a number of factors: 1) a multiplicity of languages and cultures; 2) the overlapping demographical and geographical distribution of the country 's major languages; and 3) the politicization of these languages and cultures due to both the colonial past and the policy of apartheid, and the differentiated linguistic manifestation of their politicization (Webb,1994).
South Africa is one of the few countries in the world, and the only country in Africa, which has seen, during the 20th Century, the development of a language from one which had no governmental recognition, and existed largely in spoken form, to one in which substantial parts of the government, the national economy, and higher education were run. The population of South Africa is not only multiracial but it is also multilingual. It is estimated that about 25 languages are spoken within South Africa’s borders (Mesthrei, 2006).
Historical Background
In 1924, Afrikaans, a relatively new, hybridized language in use for only about eight years at the time, became one of the official languages of South Africa. Prior to 1924, English was the only official language in South Africa. In 1948, the infamous policy of apartheid became the law of the land in South Africa (De Kadt, 2006). The apartheid ideology called for the division of South Africa 's people according to their racial/ ethnic group affiliation and geographic residence. As South Africans were increasingly and systematically separated from each other, the apartheid-based idea of nationalism based on language was also promoted.
By stressing language and cultural differences among the nation 's Black population, which includes members of African ethnic groups, persons of mixed race



References: De Kadt, J. (2006). Language development in South Africa–past and present. The Politics of Language in South Africa. Pretoria: Van Schaik Publishers, 40-56. Mesthrie, R. (2006). South Africa: Language Situation. In Encyclopedia of Language & Linguistics (Second Edition), edited by Keith Brown, Elsevier, Oxford, 539-542 Webb, V. (1994). Language policy and planning in South Africa. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 14, 254-273.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Best Essays

    South Africa

    • 4875 Words
    • 20 Pages

    South Africa Table of Contents Executive Summary 3 Reason for your selection 5 Country Background 6 Environmental Analysis 9 PESTLE Analysis 9 Political 9 Economic 10 Social 12 Technology 13 Environment 14 Balance of payment 15 Short History 15 Forecast and rationale 16 Trade Balance 19 Trade Agreements 19 History 20 Forecasts and rationale 23 Exchange rate policy 23 Forecasts and rationale 24 Growth rate of the economy 25 Short history…

    • 4875 Words
    • 20 Pages
    Best Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    South Africa

    • 13414 Words
    • 54 Pages

    uses, see South Africa (disambiguation). Republic of South Africa[show] Flag Coat of arms Motto: "!ke e: ǀxarra ǁke" (ǀXam) "Unity In Diversity" Anthem: National anthem of South Africa Capital Pretoria (executive) Bloemfontein (judicial) Cape Town (legislative) Largest city Johannesburg (2006)[2] Official languages 11 languages[3][show] Ethnic groups ([Note 1][4][5]:21) 79.2% Black African 8.9% Coloured 8.9% White 2.5% Indian or Asian 0.5% other Demonym South African…

    • 13414 Words
    • 54 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    South Africa

    • 3041 Words
    • 13 Pages

    Pre-trip Background Research 1. History and heritage ** A nation’s dream of unity and common purpose now capable of realization 1.1 The earliest people - The earliest representatives of South Africa's diversity – at least the earliest we can name – were the San and Khoekhoe peoples - Both were resident in the southern tip of the continent for thousands of years - The hunter-gatherer San ranged widely over the area - The pastoral Khoekhoe lived in those comparatively well-watered…

    • 3041 Words
    • 13 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    South Africa

    • 8029 Words
    • 33 Pages

    11/7/2011 SCHOOL OF PETROLEUM MANAGEMENT South Africa: A Cross Cultural Approach Managing Cross Cultural Issue (MCCI) | ABHIK TUSHAR DAS (EMBA10), NITIRAJ RAJPUT (PGP10), VIRAL NORIYA (PGP10) School of Petroleum Management, Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India. Managing Cross Cultural Issues Contents: 1. Population of the country; its influence in terms of PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) and GDP (Gross Domestic Product) 2. Political turmoil history and…

    • 8029 Words
    • 33 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    South Africa

    • 25050 Words
    • 101 Pages

    long term, it is necessary to examine the evolution of the political system that was based on the principles and practices of apartheid. Historical Background The Union of South Africa became a self-governing dominion within the British Commonwealth on May 31, 1910, when four British dependencies were merged under the South Africa Act passed by the British Parliament in 1909. Unification was interpreted differently by British and by Afrikaner leaders, however. To the British, uniting the four dependencies…

    • 25050 Words
    • 101 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    South Africa

    • 533 Words
    • 3 Pages

    South Africa, alone of all the British colonies did not follow the political course of embracing democracy and freedom. Even though the geographic area called South Africa had a large British presence, the country was required to follow legislation given in the agreement of the surrender in 1806 from the Dutch. Those terms meant that the country was allowed to diverge from English law and replace it with South African law. The country at that time was not plagued with inequality, layers of a class…

    • 533 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    South Africa

    • 2482 Words
    • 10 Pages

    . South Africa Alicia Hudson SOC 315 Professor Norsworthy May 6, 2013 South Africa South Africa, a country on the southern tip of Africa, has an area of 471,442sq mi and a population of 44,188,000. It is predominately a black ethnicity with 76% of the population. Although South Africa is Africa 's most developed country, most of the black people - rural and urban - are poor, with low standards of living. South Africa has vital natural resources such as diamonds and gold and is rich in…

    • 2482 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    South Africa

    • 1567 Words
    • 7 Pages

    National Flag of South Africa Country: South Africa Proportions: 2:3 South African Flag Description: The flag of South Africa consists of two horizontal stripes of equal width - red on the top and blue on the bottom. The red and blue stripes are separated by a green middle stripe which is bordered in white and splits into a horizontal Y. On the left side of the flag there is a black isosceles triangle which is outlined in yellow. South African Flag Meaning: Although the colors have no official…

    • 1567 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    South Africa

    • 442 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Sindy Veritus March 9, 2013 Global Studies: Argumentative Essay South African Apartheid Apartheid in South Africa was a system of racial segregation enforced through legislation by the National Party government from 1948 to 1994 of South Africa. Racial segregation in South Africa began in colonial times by the Dutch and British. Apartheid as an official policy was introduced following the general election in 1948. Apartheid was developed after War World II by the Afrikaner-dominated National…

    • 442 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    South Africa

    • 936 Words
    • 3 Pages

    To my fellow South Africans and citizens of this beautiful rainbow nation. This phrase is one you may have heard lately: “South Africa is no longer a safe and desirable destination for us to live in”. I ask why? What motivates our people of South Africa to say this? Is the crime, is it the economy, is it politics, is it our power shortages? If so I ask that you would please take a step back and realise that the grass is not always greener on the other side. Yes we do have our problems, but…

    • 936 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays