Thursday, February 21, 2008

International Mother Language Day

Today is the ninth annual observance of International Mother Language Day (IMLD) and the date of formal launching of the International Year of Languages (IYL). (See also my previous posting about the IYL on 31 Jan.)

A few mentions of IMLD in the African press:

  • In Gambia, the Banjul paper Daily Observer had an article entitled "2008 - the Year Ahead in Education." Dated on 16 January, it mentioned both IMLD and the IYL.
  • In South Africa, the African National Congress newsletter ANC Today (Vol. 8, No. 6 • 15-21 Feb. 2008) featured a letter from its president, Jacob G. Zuma entitled "Our Languages Matter!" (it can also be read here). He uses the occasion of IMLD & the launch of the IYL to highlight the importance of all the country's languages and ways in which their use should be supported.
  • In Ghana, the Daily Graphic of 20 Feb. 2008 included a feature article entitled "International Mother Tongue Day" (from the site; it can also be read here). It is a very interesting discussion of issues relating to use of Ghanaian languages, such as popular attitudes, policy, and education.

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