[Foundation-l] Fwd: NYTimes.com: African Languages Grow as a Wikipedia Pr...

daniwo59 at aol.com daniwo59 at aol.com
Sun Aug 27 19:48:02 UTC 2006

I have a lot of sympathy and fondness for African languages. However, I  
think the attitude we are taking is paternalistic. The same problems exist for  
languages in many other corners of the world. Identifying this issue as uniquely 
 "African" is paternalistic and, quite frankly, a tad racist. Why do we not  
make the same efforts for Khmer (the official language of Cambodia, 66  
articles), Burmese (the official language of Myanmar, with 32 million speakers,  and 
just 66 articles), or Assamese (an official language of India with 20  
million speakers and only 6 articles)?
So, for starters, I would like to suggest that we replace  the term "African 
languages" with "languages in developing regions."  Speakers of Pashto, Tajik, 
and Malayalam stand to benefit from a strong  Wikipedia just as much as the 
speakers of Swahili.

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