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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Vehicular cross-border languages, multilingualism and the African integration debate: a decolonial epistemic perspective
Author:Ndhlovu, FinexISNI
Year:2013
Periodical:Africanus (ISSN 0304-615X)
Volume:43
Issue:2
Pages:13-33
Language:English
Geographic term:Africa
Subjects:African languages
economic integration
lingua francas
neocolonialism
Abstract:Drawing on decolonial thought from the Global South, the limitations of vehicular cross-border languages (VCBLs) in addressing intercultural communication challenges to successful African integration are examined. In 2009, the African Academy of Languages (Acalan) recommended 12 VCBLs: Chichewa/Chinyanja and Setswana (southern Africa); Kiswahili, Somali and Malagasy (East Africa); Fulfulde, Mandenkan and Hausa (West Africa); Arabic and Berber (North Africa); and Lingala and Beti-fang (Central Africa). The author argues that the proposition that African VCBLs are best positioned to facilitate African integration is underpinned by a hegemonic and colonial philosophy that misdirects the African multilingual debate. This becomes apparent when the perceived utility of these VCBLs is considered against the backdrop of contestations surrounding language definition traditions. African multiversity is too complex to be accommodated within a selection of 12 monolithic language forms modelled after western philosophies of language. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]
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