Home > Article > BBC News – South Sudan adopts the language of Shakespeare

BBC News – South Sudan adopts the language of Shakespeare

William Shakespeare

Cover of William Shakespeare

The young nation of South Sudan has chosen English as its official language but after decades of civil war, the widespread learning of English presents a big challenge for a country brought up speaking a form of Arabic.

I knew there might be problems as soon as I arrived at Juba International airport – and was asked to fill in my own visa form, as the immigration officer could not write English.

The colourful banners and billboards hung out to celebrate South Sudan’s independence back in July, and still adorning the streets now, are all in English. As are the names of the new hotels, shops and restaurants.

After decades of Arabisation and Islamisation by the Khartoum government, the predominantly Christian and African south has opted for English as its official language.

via BBC News – South Sudan adopts the language of Shakespeare.

Podcast including this news item is available for free download here.

Strange Random Language Quote:

Americans who travel abroad for the first time are often shocked to discover that, despite all the progress that has been made in the last 30 years, many foreign people still speak in foreign languages”

Dave Barry  (American Writer and Humorist best known for his weekly newspaper column. b.1947)

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