NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1107562
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Aug
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1568-4555
Harmonisation and South African Languages: Twentieth Century Debates of Homogeneity and Heterogeneity
Heugh, Kathleen
Language Policy, v15 n3 p235-255 Aug 2016
This article offers a historiographic analysis of twentieth century debates amongst agents with linguistic, missionary and ideological interest in the standardisation or harmonisation of two widely used clusters of languages in South Africa, Nguni and Sotho. The discussion illustrates how faith-based and political ideologies interact with and bring influence to bear on the interpretation of linguistic endeavour. It also explores how theoretical considerations of linguistic diversity become entangled with political interest in the process of (re)articulating language policy. Whereas several authors (e.g. Harries in "Afr Aff" 87(346):25-52, 1988; Errington in "Annu Rev Anthropol" 30:19-39, 2001) have discussed nineteenth century missionary and linguistic endeavour or offered ideologically conceived proposals for the harmonisation of Nguni and Sotho languages (Nhlapo in "Bantu Babel: will the Bantu languages live?" "The sixpenny library," vol 4. "The African Bookman," Cape Town, 1944, in Nguni and Sotho, "The African Bookman," Cape Town, 1945; Alexander in "Language policy and national unity in South Africa/Azania," Buchu Books, Cape Town, 1989, in "Democratically speaking. International perspectives on language planning," National Language Project, Cape Town, pp 56-68, 1992), the focus here is to demonstrate both continuity and disjuncture of debates amongst agents with different interests during the last century.
Springer. 233 Spring Street, New York, NY 10013. Tel: 800-777-4643; Tel: 212-460-1500; Fax: 212-348-4505; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A