Language Policies, Intercultural Antagonisms and Dialogue
Edited By Kamal Salhi
Dawn Marley - Diversity and Uniformity: Linguistic Fact and Fiction in Morocco 335
DAWN MARLEY Diversity and Uniformity: Linguistic Fact and Fiction in Morocco Morocco is a multilingual country, whose complex sociolinguistic land- scape is characterised by bilingualism and diglossia. Officially, however, it has one national and official language, 'Arabic'. Arabisation has con- sistently been the basis of Moroccan language policy since Independence in 1956, and yet the language of Arabisation has never been the mother tongue of any Moroccan. The vast majority of Moroccans actually speak a dialect of Moroccan Arabic or a variety of Berber, while French is widely used in education, business and commerce, the media and else- where. This chapter will briefly describe the sociolinguistic reality of the country and then examine the political and ideological motivation behind a language policy that ignores it. It will also consider the cultural tensions created by such a policy and in particular will look at the role of the two languages that represent major obstacles to Arabisation: French and Berber. These two languages are associated with cultures that are per- ceived as antagonistic towards 'national' culture, for very different rea- sons. French is an exogenous language, initially imposed on the country by a colonial power and now representing modem, Western culture, whereas Berber is the indigenous language, predating Arabic in Morocco and representing an arguably more 'authentic' traditional culture. In their different ways, both languages create problems, linguistic and cultural, for language policymakers in Morocco, as their continuing presence undermines the fiction of Arabic as the sole national language, uniting the country...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.