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Rhodes > Multilingualism > Latest News

Former editor of RUMultilingualism Website publishes journal article in isiXhosa

Date Released: Sat, 18 May 2019 12:52 +0200

We would like to extend our heartfelt congratulations to one of our own, former RU Multilingual editor and Student Nominee of the RU Language Committee, Master of Arts student Philasande Mfaba from the African Languages section of Rhodes University’s School of Languages for his recent publication in isiXhosa:

Mfaba, P. (2018). "IsiXhosa sakudala kunye nendlela esichaphazela ngayo abantu abasisebenzisayo kule mihla", South African Journal of African Languages, vol. 30, no. 3. Article available from: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02572117.2018.1518040

Abstract

Ukubhalwa kwesiXhosa kuye kwajongana noguquguquko oluninzi apha eminyakeni ukususela mhla labhalwa olu lwimi ngeemini zemishinari ukuza kuma namhlanje. Iingcaphephe eziliqela zababhali besiXhosa ezifana nooMqhayi, ooJolobe, ooRubusana nabanye basebenze ngokuzimisela ukuqinisekisa ukuba olu lwimi luba lulwimi olusesikweni lude lube lolu lwimi silwaziyo namhlanje. Xa ubani engathelekisa ubhalo-magama lwesiXhosa sakudala nobhalo-magama lwesiXhosa sangoku angafunga ukuba ziilwimi ezimbini ezohlukeneyo. Ngoku lonke uxanduva lokuphuhlisa indlela ezibhalwa ngazo iilwimi ezisesikweni eMzantsi Afrika lusezandleni zamaqela afana nePan South African Language Board (PanSALB) ekufuneka eqinisekisile ukuba zonke iilwimi ezigunyazisiweyo eMzantsi Afrika zibhalwe ngendlela eyiyo. Eli phepha liza kulanda iimbali yokubhalwa kwesiXhosa ukususela mhla labhalwa olu lwimi. Eyona njongo yeli phepha kukunika iinkcukacha ngembali yokubhalwa kwesiXhosa ukuya kuma kwindlela esibhalwa ngayo kule mihla, nendlela ulwimi eluthe laguquka ngayo apha eminyakeni. Ngaphezulu eli phepha liza kunika imizekelo yezinto ezisabhalwe ngesiXhosa sakudala ze emva koko lichaze ukuba ezo zinto zibachaphazela njani abantu abasebenzisa olu lwimi, ingakumbi abafundi besiXhosa ezikolweni. Ingxoxo yeli phepha kukuba isiXhosa esisabhalwe ngohlobo lwakudala kufuneka silungisiwe kwenzelwa ukuba isiXhosa sibhalwe ngendlela enye ngumntu wonke. Loo nto izakwenza ukuba abafundi bangazifumani sele befundiswa izinto ezingafaniyo ezikolweni kunye nasemakhaya okanye eCaweni njengoko kunjalo kumaculo eCawe kunye nakwizichazi-magama. Le mibhalo ingasetyenziswa ukufunda imbali kodwa ayinakusetyenziswa njengesixhobo sokufunda emakhaya, kwizikolo okanye kwiiCawe.

Old orthography of isiXhosa and how it influences current users

IsiXhosa orthography went through some changes over the years since it was first written in 1823 by John Bennie. Many scholars in this field, including but not limited to book writers, the likes of Mqhayi, Jolobe and Rubusana, tried hard to standardise this language. Today it is the work of organisations such as the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) to ensure that all South African languages are written and used in a standardised way. If one compares the old isiXhosa orthography with the modern one, one would think they are two different languages. The main aim of this paper is to give an overview of the development of isiXhosa orthography up to the present day. This paper advocates that the old orthography be revised in texts used by the isiXhosa community. This will avoid confusion where learners are taught a certain way of reading and writing in schools when they are exposed to different orthographies at home or church, as the case may be with church hymns or dictionaries. Although those texts can still be useful for historical purposes, they should not be used as the main source for the isiXhosa public either at home, school or church.

 

 

Source:Sasha-Lee Schafli