Universiteit Leiden

nl en

Lecture | Applied African Linguistics

Developing Sesotho as medium of instruction at tertiary level - challenges and opportunities

Monday 29 May 2023
Applied African Linguistics


This presentation will highlight challenges emanating from the cross-border project between Lesotho and South African scholars who teach Sesotho language in higher institutions. This project's main objective was to produce Sesotho material that will be used for teaching and learning in higher institutions. There were numerous challenges in this project that emanated from the discrepancies in orthography and lack of standardization and harmonization of certain words/letters/ etc. The lack of standardization and unified orthographies made sharing scholarly publications written in Sesotho from Lesotho and South Africa difficult.  Sesotho is the official language in Lesotho and one of the official languages of South Africa. In the 1960s, SA chose to use a scientifically researched orthography, while Lesotho opted to continue with the one introduced by the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society in their quest to translate the Bible into Sesotho in the 19th century.  Both Sesotho speakers from Lesotho and South Africa understand each other. However, the problem comes when writing. They write Sesotho differently, hence it is difficult for academics from either one of these countries to share their knowledge or at least use each other’s literary works. The study will focus on the review document that was used for this project. Interviews with both academics and students will be shared.  The study proposes reconciliation of two orthographies to be merged to avoid further confusion.

This lecture will be held on Zoom
Meeting ID: 638 6323 9013
Passcode: pAkt*fW1

This website uses cookies.  More information.