Taalmonument: come and have your say about Afrikaans’s complete history and future
Part 2 of Carstens’ unique book places emphasis on the African roots of language
As part of the Afrikaans Language Museum and Monument’s 45th birthday celebrations, an extremely interesting book launch of the second part of ‘Die storie van Afrikaans: Uit Europa en van Afrika. Biografie van ’n taal’ (‘The story of Afrikaans: Out of Europe and from Africa. Biography of a language’) takes place on Monday, 9 March 2020, at the monument.
During this free event, the renowned co-author of the book, Prof Wannie Carstens, will be in conversation with well-known journalist Jean Oosthuizen. According to them, the aim is to stimulate a conversation about how Afrikaans’s complete past should be told, and therefore they want to welcome as many people as possible to express their opinions as well.
The book series ‘Die storie van Afrikaans’ is the biography of Afrikaans as it developed on three continents: in Europe (where the development of Dutch as the basis of Afrikaans is represented), in Africa (where the language/dialect in its unique socio-historical circumstances and under the influence of various African languages, including Khoi and San, over time eventually developed into fully-fledged Afrikaans) and from Asia (where the languages of the slaves influenced the developing Afrikaans to help create its present form). Book 1 presents the European past of Afrikaans; in book 2, the African past of Afrikaans is discussed.
The books also take the form of a kind of biography – thus a visual explanation of what contributed to form Afrikaans as it is. An extensive range of illustrations help to illustrate this: numerous sketches and photographs of defining events that affected Afrikaans and its speakers, schematics and tables with statistics, indicating core publications on and in Afrikaans. Thus far, this has not been done in other books on Afrikaans.
The book therefore attempts to present a comprehensive and inclusive history of Afrikaans. In this respect, the book is different from other books on the history of Afrikaans in that it looks at the past, the present and also the future of the language, and how all the speakers of the language (the full spectrum of Afrikaans speakers) played a role and also made a contribution.
Carstens retired at the North-West University in 2017 as professor of Afrikaans linguistics. He served and serves on various bodies involved with Afrikaans, and co-founded the Ernst van Heerden collection of Afrikaans poetry in Belgium; he was also involved in establishing various cooperation and exchange agreements with universities and other institutions in the Low Countries. Carstens is a co-recipient of the CJ Langenhoven Prize for Linguistics from the SA Academy of Science and Arts. Oosthuizen is a respected journalist who has worked for the SABC, among others, and reports for various publications, including online.
This free event, with snacks and drinks, commences at 18:00 for 18:30 at the Taalmonument on Paarl Mountain, and booking is essential. RSVP by 6 March with Elsabé Pearce at email@example.com or 021 863 0543. The books will also be for sale.
For more information regarding all the other exciting events such as the music festivals, picnics and conversations, as well as the Taalmonument’s 45th celebrations, call 021 863 0543/4809, visit www.taalmonument.co.za or follow them on Facebook.