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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Language Issue in South African Educational Literature: The Case of Orature
Author:Langa, Bheki
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:oral literature
language policy
African languages
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Education and Oral Traditions
Literature, Mass Media and the Press
Abstract:For the author, the issue of African languages as preponderant carriers of African literature in a postapartheid South Africa is inextricably linked to the principles for which the South African people have long struggled and suffered. Although the mere adoption of African languages does not automatically translate into transmission of authentic and progressive cultural values, the author believes that the transformation of the present political equation in favour of black South Africans can spawn a progressive language culture, provided it is carefully researched, implemented, evaluated and continually reevaluated. The issue of the use of African languages is not only a question of political and cultural empowerment, it is also a question of democratization for African languages. They must be able to assume their proper historic role in the general life of the nation by widening the spheres of influence and participation in national affairs for the majority of the population, who are mostly speakers of one African language or another. Against this political and cultural backdrop the place of orature, which is an indigenous African literature, must be favourably viewed. It must also be viewed in its historical evolution with preponderant European influence and articulation. Oral literature is the most natural African literary form in an educational system promoting the preponderant use of African languages. Bibliogr., ref.