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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Language and ethnic group relations in non-racial schools
Author:Gaganakis, MargaretISNI
Periodical:The English Academy Review
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:ethnic relations
secondary education
English language
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/10131759285310061
Abstract:This paper highlights some of the complexities and challenges which educationists might face in English-medium schools in South Africa which are enrolling increasing numbers of black pupils for whom English is a second language. Its particular focus is on the complex linkages between ethnic identity and the perceived prestige of the English language. The paper is based on research carried out at six 'open' private schools. Thirty black pupils ranging in age from sixteen to seventeen years were interviewed in order to gain information on two central social categories by which they defined themselves: firstly, being black and secondly, as English speakers. The research showed that being black is generally associated with a world of constraints and the collective experience of exclusion. By learning English pupils have been socialized into the existing relations of power at a particular level. When considering future language policy, the perceived prestige value of English and its association with upward social mobility needs to be addressed, so that English and African languages can take their legitimate places in a postapartheid South Africa. Bibliogr., note.