Black woman regards Afrikaans as ‘model of decolonisation’

Dr. Edith Phaswana

Seeing the Afrikaans language as a decolonised language, speakers at the Breaking Down Borders Africa Youth Summit conference shared how central language is in decolonising education.

Dr Edith Phaswana, a senior lecturer at the University of South Africa (Unisa), said a model of decolonisation can be learnt from how Afrikaans developed.

“It’s because this language evolved in the twentieth century. Before 1914 there was no Afrikaans, but today we speak of Afrikaans as scientific language that is taught at university level, that has produced its own literature as well,” said Phaswana.

“Our languages – isiXhosa, seSotho and all of them – are older than Afrikaans, are more matured than Afrikaans and if Afrikaans can reach this level … it means there’s a possibility that we can form our own creole from the many Nguni and Sotho languages that we have in this country in order to form a formal scientific language at university level,” she added.

Extract from CityPress