Africa Speaks Reasoning Forum

ENTERTAINMENT/ ARTS/ LITERATURE => Books & Reviews => Topic started by: Makini on August 03, 2011, 12:31:16 AM

Title: "Boosting Marginalized Languages"
Post by: Makini on August 03, 2011, 12:31:16 AM
Zimbabwean Author Brings Science Fiction to the chiShona Language

by Mark Reid

Full article: (

...Although Africa is scattered with hundreds of traditional languages which vary widely from country to country and community to community, the colonial languages of English, Portuguese, French and Spanish – and localised variations thereof – are still the dominant forms of communication in many nations.

The promotion of endemic languages is a controversial subject throughout Africa. Some academics are opposed to it and prefer to conform to western standards.

Others think it’s time for Africans to promote their cultures and languages without apology and be proud of their heritage. South Africa, too, is one of these countries, with its national Department of Arts and Culture embarking on a drive in the mid-2000s to promote the use of the mother tongue in writing and publishing.

The department also launched a multilinguism campaign in 2010, to strengthen the situation of all the country’s official languages.

Musodza is a supporter of Kenyan academic Ngugi wa Thiong’o's Decolonising the Mind, and firmly believes that African authors need to use their own languages in order to advance their literature rather than the language of their colonial legacy.

He says that his target audience is anyone who finds the time to read, and dispels the notion that it is impossible to write "complicated stuff" in a language that is often shunned by the educated back home. (