Download The English-Vernacular Divide: Postcolonial Language by Vaidehi Ramanathan PDF

By Vaidehi Ramanathan

This publication deals a severe exploration of the function of English in postcolonial groups resembling India. in particular, it makes a speciality of a few neighborhood ways that the language falls alongside the traces of a class-based divide (with ancillary ones of gender and caste as well). The ebook argues that problems with inequality, subordination and unequal price appear to revolve without delay round the normal positioning of English on the subject of vernacular languages. the writer was once raised and schooled within the Indian academic method

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Extra info for The English-Vernacular Divide: Postcolonial Language Politics and Practice (Bilingual Education and Biligualism)

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1) Making English compulsory [in Indian schools] has rendered hundreds of thousands of children handicapped. About 2% of the country’s population has control over the country’s resources through English. There appears to be only darkness for thousands of poor, oppressed villagers… . (p. 1) (2) English has divided Indians from other Indians. Because of English, there is in the country a small élite that looks down on the common person. Through English, one big part of this country remains weak and poor, and a very small portion rich.

Who can calculate the immeasurable loss sustained by the nation owing to thousands of its young men having been obliged to waste years in mastering a foreign language and its idiom, of which in their daily life they have the least use and in learning which they had to neglect their own mother-tongue and their own literature? (p. 13) The fact that Gandhi’s home state was Gujarat played a role in the language policy adopted by the state when it came into being with the dissolution of the old Bombay Presidency and the creation of the two states of Maharashtra and Gujarat (Gujarat came into existence in 1960).

The removal of English is a matter of cultural and civic pride. Without removing English, we cannot eradicate poverty. (p. 2) (3) Those who believe that English is an international language also believe that the world’s knowledge is produced only in English, whereas in reality there are all kinds of domains in which progress has been made in a range of other languages. We either remain in ignorance of this knowledge or read about it only when it is translated into English. (p. 5) (4) The country that wishes to keep all its doors open to the world must also keep all its windows open, not just the window of English.

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