[lg policy] question for the members of this list

Tariq Rahman drt_rahman at YAHOO.COM
Sun Jan 3 13:24:22 UTC 2010


Dear Professor Schiffman,
Please keep forwarding them. One never knows which one will contain a nugget. Happy New Year to you and all other colleagues on this list.
Tariq Rahman

Dr. Tariq Rahman
Distinguished National Professor & Director
National Institute of Pakistan Studies
Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad
Pakistan.

My other email addresses are:-
trahman at nips.qau.edu.pk, director.nips at yahoo.com

--- On Sat, 1/2/10, Harold Schiffman <hfsclpp at gmail.com> wrote:


From: Harold Schiffman <hfsclpp at gmail.com>
Subject: [lg policy] question for the members of this list
To: "lp" <lgpolicy-list at groups.sas.upenn.edu>
Date: Saturday, January 2, 2010, 8:19 AM


All:

I have a question that I would like an answer to.  I receive a daily
"google alert" on the topic of "language policy." This is a service
I requested of Google, and what they do is search the web for any
mention of "language" and "policy" in the messages they
transmit.  They compile a list and forward it to me, and I read the
messages to see if they are germane to our topic. (Many
are not--many messages talk about the "language" of a policy, by which
they mean the wording of the text, not the human
organ of speech and/or a named variety of language.)

Recently, the google alerts have been turning up bibliographic items
such as articles or monographs about language policy,
and I have forwarded some of these to the list.  Nobody has complained
about this, but I wonder if this is useful to anyone. For example,
yesterday I forwarded a message about the language policy of the Food
and Agricultural Organization, a two-line squib mentioning
which order they list language icons in.  Others have been from
various jurisdictions in South Africa, which seems to be requiring
or at least urging people to formulate a language policy, and make it
known; these have included the Stellenbosch University,
the government of the Western Cape, and others.  Further examples
include departments of a Danish university, such as the Engineering
School.

Since I always tell my students that language policies can be found in
lots of different nooks and crannies of the world, not just
the governments of states, but religious organizations, labor unions,
and other jurisdictions and polities, these are good examples
of that.  It also reminds us that sometimes a body may have a covert
policy, i.e. one that assumes that a certain language will
be "official" but doesn't state it explicitly.  These, of course, get
no mention.

Anyway, my question is: would you like me to continue to forward these
"mini-squibs" about language policy, e.g. in the FAO,
or should I be more judicious?

Thanks, and Happy New Year!

H. Schiffman

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