The Use of English as a medium of Instruction in post-colonial South Asia with Special Reference to Bangladesh
Tania Hossain (Waseda University)
Paper short abstract:
English entered into the South Asia with the migration of the British and plays a dominant role in South Asia. Accordingly this paper will focus on the migration of the British in South Asia and their linguistics impact in South Asia especially in Bangladesh.
Paper long abstract:
Most of the postcolonial countries of the world such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, India and Bangladesh have suffered long periods of political, economic and linguistic domination. Bangladesh has also taken English as a medium of instruction for political, economical, educational and other purposes. Language is one of the most important instruments in the mechanism of imperialism. English entered into the South Asia with the migration of the British. Most of the postcolonial countries in South Asia such as India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal suffered long periods of political, economic and linguistic domination. Although these postcolonial countries have taken different paths to nation building, the medium of instruction policies has been a key component in national development. English plays an important role in India with dozens of local languages including Hindi. English is taught in the largest number of schools and it is used in Radio, Television and newspaper. In India, it is regarded as one of the tools of national building. With the above backdrop of English in India, this paper will focus on the migration of the British in South Asia and their linguistics impact in South Asia especially in Bangladesh. Viswanathan (1989) mentioned that the use of English language teaching in India could of itself be regarded as a form of social, cultural and political control. It basically produced a class of people who are alienated from their own language and culture and discontented with the colonial rule. At present, in the field of Indian education as well as in Bangladeshi education, English is no longer a medium of instruction either in primary schools or in the secondary schools, except English medium schools, but English does play a special role in both countries. English is used as a language of administration, inter-state communication, and higher education in many states in India and also in Bangladesh, for projecting cultural heritage, economic programs, tourism, politics, industry trade, foreign policies and research findings overseas.
Migration and its linguistic consequences in South Asia and neighbouring regions