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Language: Jamaican Creole

  • Mar 22, 2012
  • 03:06 PM

Don't destroy the dialect!

Michael Burke / Jamaica Observer
Jamaicans are still divided as to whether Jamaica has a language of its own. From the birth of nationalism in Jamaica in the mid-1930s there were attempts to preserve the Jamaican dialect, or patois as it has been called.
  • Mar 18, 2012
  • 08:17 PM

'Corruption of language is no cultural heritage'

Carolyn Cooper / Jamaica Gleaner
These days, The Gleaner would never publish on the editorial page a column written entirely in Jamaican. Believe me, I have tried. We have flag independence. Yet we continue to suffer from mental slavery. Claiming the power of the language we have created on this Jamrock would be a big step on the long journey to full freedom.
  • Mar 15, 2012
  • 11:29 PM

ECJ sticks to English for polls

Jamaica Gleaner
DESPITE SHARP criticisms from prominent voices in academia on his instruction to election workers last December to use standard English to address electors, Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) Chairman Professor Errol Miller says he does not intend to recant on the directive which remains in force for the March 26 local government elections.
  • Dec 28, 2011
  • 12:03 AM

Jamaica's patois Bible: The word of God in creole (video)

Robert Pigott / BBC News
The Bible is, for the first time, being translated into Jamaican patois. It's a move welcomed by those Jamaicans who want their mother tongue enshrined as the national language - but opposed by others, who think learning and speaking English should be the priority.
  • Dec 13, 2011
  • 12:04 AM

A non-Creole Jamaica is a false concept

Sondré Colly / Jamaica Observer
...Jamaican Creole on the other hand is a 100 per cent local product. Its birth being a result of the unique mix of English and West African languages such as Fante, Igbo, Wolof, Yoruba and Twi, many of which are no longer spoken in their original forms. All the more reason for the Creole to be valued and preserved.
  • Nov 27, 2011
  • 03:37 PM

Do politicians need to speak proper English?

Jamaica Observer
AS serving and aspiring politicians mount campaign platforms in the run-up to the next general election, the tricky matter of how well they handle the English language has again become fodder for debate.
  • Oct 31, 2011
  • 05:44 AM

The Jamaican Charter of Rights, now available in patois

Alicia Dunkley / Jamaica Observer
The new Charter of Rights, passed by Parliament in March this year, has been translated into the local dialect or patois, courtesy of Professor Hubert Devonish, Head of the Department of Language, Linguistics and Philosophy at the University of the West Indies, Mona.
  • Apr 17, 2011
  • 10:19 PM

What about freedom from language discrimination?

Hubert Devonish / The Gleaner
The Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms is about to become law without any specific provision for freedom from discrimination on the grounds of language. This is against the background of a society in which two languages are used - English and Jamaican Creole.

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