[lg policy] Multilingualism in northern Thailand: Thai boys cave problem

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Thu Aug 9 14:16:04 EDT 2018


For some weeks  I've been trying to locate an article in the NYTimes where
in the story of the Thai soccer team lost in a cave mentioned the role
of multilingualism, and how one of the Thai boys was fluent in several
languages, and how he helped communicate with the British rescuers
and helped solve the problem of communicating in the cave..

Today I finally found this quite from the story in the NYTimes:

Statess Teenagr Acts as Interpreter in 'Impossible' Cave Rescue

Proficient in English, Thai, Burmese, Mandarin and Wa, Adul politely
communicated to the British divers his squad's greatest
needs:  food and clarity on just how long they had stayed alive.

"When a teammate piped up in broken English "eat, eat, eat" Adul said he
had alredy covered  that point.  In images released by the Thai Navy SEAL
force, he had a huge grin on his gaunt face. On Tuesday, the border town of
Mae Sai, where Adul lived at a church, finally had cause to celebrate, as
the Wild Boars' 18 day ordeal came to an end."

New York Times Wednesday July 11tth, page A7




 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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