[lg policy] A battle over language is hampering Algeria’s development

Francis Hult francis.hult at englund.lu.se
Thu Aug 31 04:12:35 EDT 2017


The Economist


A battle over language is hampering Algeria’s development


For most countries, language is as simple as ABC. Not Algeria. Its kindergartens are a linguistic morass. The republic’s official language is standard Arabic, but few children grow up speaking it, so they often feel lost on their first day of school. Berber, the tongue of perhaps a quarter of Algerians, was officially recognised last year—but no one can agree on which of its six dialects to teach. Algeria’s French-speaking elite prefer their old masters’ lingo. The education minister, Nouria Benghebrit, advocates the introduction of a fourth language: Darija, which fuses the other three and is the mother tongue of most Algerians.


Full story:
https://www.economist.com/news/middle-east-and-africa/21726743-arabic-berber-french-and-hybrid-three-vie-dominance-battle-over

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