Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Our Language, Captured by the English!

“…if some Jamaicans are uncertain about the legitimacy of Jamaican patois and whether it should be used to translate the Bible, academics in the United Kingdom are embracing it as a full-fledged language. Last year, the University of Birmingham introduced a Jamaican patois course, the first of its kind in the world.

Lynette Mitchell, a student at Birmingham University who was born in England to Jamaican parents, was required to take the Jamaican patois course as a core part of her PhD studies on black vernacular as a reading strategy for interpreting the Bible.

She told the Sunday Observer that Level One to Three of the patois course required a minimum of 150 tuition hours. "Level One and Two of the course are equivalent to our GCSE (General Certificate in Secondary Education) here in the UK, and Level Three of it, is equivalent to 'A' Levels here. Once you reach level three, you can move on to a Diploma in Public Service Interpreting, specialising in Jamaican (patois). This is because the Institute of Linguistics in the UK has given the Jamaican official declaration as a language."

Taken from the Sunday Observer. To read the full article, click here.

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