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The politics of language in the Romanian education system, 2010.

Emese Emoke Batizán
Corvinus University of Budapest
Emese Emoke Batizán
Corvinus University of Budapest
Open Panel

Abstract

Subtitle: Debates around how to teach the History and Geography of Romania for children studying in minority languages. Language and politics are interwoven, language is the object but also the medium and “actor” of politics. Different types of language planning and language policy mean at the same time different political orientations, political goals as well. In Hornberger’s estimation language policy and the language of education serve as a “vehicle for promoting the utility of a certain language and promoting the rights of the speakers to participate in state/global communities in their own terms but at the same time a vehicle for promoting a certain identity, culture too, that can be different from the one that is declared by the sate as official (1998:441). But can it be detected from the “centre” what problems and needs do citizens, children face in certain peculiar regions of the country and what are the difficulties that school children are struggling with? This is one of the main questions that will be elaborated and tried to be answered in this paper, in the mirror of Hungarian children living in Romania, studying in Hungarian but still studying the History and Geography of Romania in Romanian. This paper analyzes their attitudes toward the Romanian language as well as the success of this type of language acquisition and studying, that cannot be perhaps detected, neither understood in weberian terms from the “centre” without getting the “sense of the field” without going into the institutions and observing the mechanisms.