Language planning in Botswana and Malawi: a comparative study
PublisherWalter de Gruyter, http://www.degruyter.de
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The article discusses language planning in two Southern African countries, Botswana and Malawi. Both countries are multilingual and multicultural. They also share a common British colonial history. At independence, the two countries retained English as the official language. In Botswana, Setswana was made the national language while in Malawi, it was Chichewa. Over the years, these languages have been developed and promoted at the expense of other indigenous languages, a situation that has prompted linguistic minorities to engage in the language-based politics of recognition. The article discusses how Botswana and Malawi are responding to the call for the official recognition of more indigenous languages in domains such as government, education, and mass media. Relevant comparisons and contrasts between Botswana and Malawi are drawn in this regard in the article. One clear common denominator is the dominance of English in official domains in the two countries.