Language and education in Africa: a fresh approach to the debates on language, education, and cultural identity

This book starts with Vansina, who holds that old cultural traditions in Africa have been destroyed, but that new ones are emerging. With Prah, the study argues that a key role is played by education, which has to be based on African languages and values. Using a new quantitative comparative analysis, the book shows that maintaining former colonial languages as medium of instruction will become impossible to sustain. Over the next decade, some African countries will have to transition to African languages. The issue of language choice has vexed researchers and policymakers. The study shows how all over the world, designed languages serve speakers of several discerned languages. This solution could also be used in Africa, as demonstrated through six brief case studies. African languages in education will bolster the new, decolonised cultural traditions already taking shape on the continent. 

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Read the book review by Andy Chebanne (University of Botswana).


Author(s) / editor(s)

Bert van Pinxteren

About the author(s) / editor(s)

Bert van Pinxteren is a guest researcher at the Leiden University Centre for Linguistics (LUCL). He obtained his PhD in September 2021. Bert completed the Research Master in African Studies in 2018.