These nationalist culture brokers suppressed oppositional and alternative thought within the Afrikaner community. The slogan was rightly an emotive, visceral response to Afrikaner ethnic, nationalist hegemony and … the Afrikaans population it was consistently received with hostility as an oppressor, and, from the time the National Party came to power in 1948, Afrikaans became the openly-favoured language. Last year, he said, more than … “Afrikaans” became their linguistic vehicle and “Afrikaners” their label. University of Pretoria provides funding as a partner of The Conversation AFRICA. But it is hardly surprising that the DA’s position in the University of Stellenbosch language debate has been construed by our opponents – and by certain voices in the media – as an attempt to protect privilege. Around 1870 the first steps towards the battle between various views on the nature of Cape Dutch, or what would become known as Afrikaans, were taken. Add … So the objective should not be to develop a dozen academic languages, but rather to offer a diversity of languages that allow for more students to study. In Durban this would be isiZulu or English. Not only was the language labelled the “language of the oppressor”, introducing multigenerational antagonism against it, but these policies also caused deep levels of alienation among generations of first language speakers. In the Western Cape, more people speak Afrikaans as a first language than any other language, and the majority of these people are not white. This could not be further from the truth, but it is low-hanging fruit for those who want to exploit what is known as a “wedge issue” in politics. Afrikaans was labelled “the language of the oppressor”. It was spoken by peasants, the urban proletariat whatever their ethnic background and even the middle class of civil servants, traders and teachers. The controversy over the medium of instruction at traditionally Afrikaans universities such as Stellenbosch has brought this to the fore again. To give some historical perspective: this was as early as the second British occupation of the Cape Colony. Birmingham, Birmingham, The Large Hadron Collider and the Hidden Universe The policy was deeply unpopular since Afrikaans was regarded by some as the language of the oppressor. As to Afrikaans as the language of the oppressor, it is certainly true that Afrikaans has been forced down the throats of the majority of South Africans. But I will not get drawn into this type of populism contest. But when you listen to many of the anti-Afrikaans arguments being put forward, there seems to be far more at play. It goes as far as to say that every person has the right to be taught in the language of their choice, where reasonably practicable. Portsmouth, Hampshire, Online talk: Prof Sir Andy Haines and Prof Chris Dye in Conversation: "Building back healthier: climate change, health and the recovery from Covid-19" It features musical greats Jitsvinger, Kyle Shepard, Emile (black noise), Moenier Adamas, Shane Cooper, Blaq Pearl, the powerhouse b-boy, Bliksemstraal, and the poetic genius of Jethro Louw. Apart from the phonetic spelling, any contemporary Afrikaans speaker would recognise it as near-modern Afrikaans. But this must always happen alongside, and not at the expense of English. Also, that their worldview was the only significant expression of being Afrikaans speaking. One gets the sense that, for many, this is not just about removing Afrikaans from Stellenbosch, but from wider society. The DA supports the use of both English and Afrikaans as primary and equal languages of instruction at Stellenbosch; in other words, completely dual-medium. It was derided by the upper classes of the Cape Colony, be they Dutch or English-speaking. It’s essential to consider the current status of Afrikaans, as well as its history. If it is truly about expanding access, then surely the more quality dual-medium universities we have, the better. Apart from the fact that some formerly oppressed groups use Afrikaans as their mother tongue; Afrikaans is also employed by the working class when they communicate across ethnic lines – especially those who were born before independence. But perhaps we should ask ourselves what is really being debated at Stellenbosch. Would the same critics be vocal in their opposition of this language as a primary medium of instruction? Today, more than a dozen students at the university are conducting their master’s degrees in isiZulu. Like several other South African languages, Afrikaans is a cross-border language spanning sizeable communities of speakers in Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe. Afrikaans is a southern African language. This simplified, creolised language had its roots mainly in Dutch, mixed with seafarer variants of Malay, Portuguese, Indonesian and the indigenous Khoekhoe and San languages. This is an edited, updated version of an article Prof Willemse wrote for Mistra in 2015. This a very slippery slope. A Some of the leading figures of what would become known as the “first language movement” (1874–1890) strenuously denied the creole nature of the language. Because the DA is such a diverse party that brings people from all walks of life together around ideas and values, rather than constructs like race or language, we have to deal with far more wedge issues than any other party. Having nearly equal status with English, Afrikaans has the dubious honor of being a second white oppressor language. One thing that makes South Africa’s situation interesting is Afrikaans. Offshoots of this language community self-identified as “Oorlams”. 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