Original Research

Funksionele meertaligheid in Suid-Afrika: 'n onbereikbare ideaal?

M. Verhoef
Literator | Vol 19, No 1 | a511 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v19i1.511 | © 1998 M. Verhoef | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 26 April 1998 | Published: 26 April 1998

About the author(s)

M. Verhoef, Departement Tale, Vaaldriehoekkampus, Potchefstroomse Universiteit vir CHO, South Africa

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Functional multilingualism in South Africa: an unattainable ideal?
Although much has been done on an official level to establish true multilingualism in South Africa, a tendency towards English monolingualism seems to exist in the country. The aim of this article is to describe the official stipulations in pursuit of multilingualism, as they appear in the Constitution (Act 108 of 1996), the School Act (Act 84 of 1996) and the final report of Langtag. In addition to the present demands, the article also responds to previous demands for multilingualism in the South African context, particularly as stated in the Bantu Education Act of 1953. It is argued that, because of the negative connotations associated with mother-tongue instruction in the past, contemporary mother-tongue instruction will also be contaminated. Apart from the theoretical investigation into multilingualism, the article reports on empirical research that has been done in this regard in the North West Province where the attitudes and perceptions of the school population towards the regional languages were measured. Although the subjects reacted positively to the official status granted to several South African languages, they expressed a preference for English as working language because of the access it gives to personal, economic and social development and empowerment. The article concludes with brief recommendations regarding language planning opportunities that derive from this situation.


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Crossref Citations

1. Socio-Political Correspondences Between Bevand Bsae Lessons From The U.S Experience
Marlene Verhoef, Ute Smit
South African Journal of Linguistics  vol: 18  issue: sup38  first page: 149  year: 2000  
doi: 10.1080/10118063.2000.9724569