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Colonial Myths
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Colonial Myths
The ruling elite in south Asia have generated myths to sustain their hold over all public and private institutions. The common paradoxes in the arguments of elite are numerous. A few of them in  south Asian context are following,
Paradox of Period: -
         Worth in the past, but worthless at present.
Most agree that Taj Mahal is an architectural marvel and lot of design and great effort is visible in great Forts, Monuments, Indian Temples and Mosques built in ancient and medieval India. The architects used Indian languages such as Urdu, Hindi, Oriya, Tamil, and Telugu etc. But the post colonial south Asian elite have disqualified these languages for studying architecture or civil engineering or mechanical engineering in India.
Indian systems of medicine such as Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani employed Indian languages and texts for centuries. But no longer can they be used as medium of instruction.
Paradox of Expression: -
        
Fit for cultural expression and unfit for scientific expression. You can sing a more demanding song in Indian language, but cannot give an equally demanding lecture in maths or science at class rooms of a college. While Indian languages can be used for marketing the products, they are debarred in the boardrooms and Management Institutes. It is an old story that ordinary Japanese or German people can avail the latest knowledge in their native languages. The latest is that everybody including the newly recognised Latvian or revived Hebrew or minuscule Macedonian can access knowledge except Indian and African languages.
Paradox of Race: -
        All the Languages of white race are competent and none of the languages of black and brown people is meant so. More tanned the skin gets less competent the language becomes. Not a single European language however small is declared ineligible for studying science and maths at primary schools and for doing cutting edge research. But not a single language of Black people of Africa and brown skinned south Asians is deemed eligible, however large such as Indian languages spoken by crores of people.
    Children must have right skin color to access knowledge in their language. A white child can become a doctor, engineer or lawyer by studying in Icelandic, Estonian, Danish, and Finnish etc. But none of the languages spoken by millions and millions of south Asian children are fit for becoming even government clerks.

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So called “Aryan” race of south Asia is not fair enough to get recognition for their languages as scientific languages. So is the Dravidian south India. Shamelessly all are trying to become English speaking “Gori”, of course with British accent. The Arab children are also not white enough to accept Arabic as language of technology and medicine.

   

Pity the crores of children who are denied fundamental right to knowledge in their languages because of their colour.

 

                 Hitherto unfit for even primary education, few African countries have learned hard lessons from AIDS epidemic and bad education. South Africa, Tanzania, Ethiopia are the hopes for change.


 
Paradox of Media: -
          Fit for all scientific information through private media, but unfit for bureaucratic purpose. One need not have to read “New York Times” to know Obama is elected as president of America or “Wall Street Journal” to understand that world is witnessing financial crisis or read “Nature” to know that water is detected in the Moon. While an ordinary Indian literate in Indian languages can get the latest information instantaneously on world events through Indian language private media, Indian languages are assumed unfit to gather information about latest scientific information.
Paradox of Script: -
         Simpler Indian scripts unfit for IT education and Computerisation, but more complex scripts are fit for ICT era:-
The cyber presence of Indian languages that use precise phonemes is abysmal compared to languages that use thousands of characters and symbols like Japanese and Chinese. All computers are shipped with native scripts in all countries of the world except in south Asia. While Indian scripts are witnessing half hearted introduction in mobile phone handsets, all other languages have gone far ahead. Half of the top selling novels are cell phone novels in Japan.
Paradox of Cost: -
          More costly option of spreading English to crores of people is preferred than incredibly simple and economical option of translating knowledge
: - All democracies and developed countries enable, encourage, and subsidise translation of all available relevant knowledge. The elite in colonial language countries imitate their former colonies by making the whole population learn colonial language as in colonial period. It is a costlier colonial legacy to train lakhs of teachers and crores of children than facilitating translation in to all Indian languages by few translators or purchasing translation rights.
Paradox of Global Tongue: -
        The more intensive is the use of Global language in higher education and administration of the developing Asian countries, less globalised is its people.
The more widespread is the use of English in Anglophone Asian countries, the less developed and productive are the economies. Worse, all south Asian countries in Asia make more people poor, hungry, ill educated and are considered low knowledge societies than native language developing countries.
Paradox of democracy: -
        
Change can happen in the small democracies of the west and it is unacceptable in the largest democracy of the world. One can get access to government and do latest research in small minority language groups that were recently recognised as official languages spoken by few thousands and lakhs. But crores of citizens in self declared great democracy of India cannot even get access to their governments in the majority Indian language groups spoken by crores.
         The paradoxes are the result of neo-colonial elite capture of power that has made India a pseudo democracy subservient to bureaucracy supported by anglophile intelligentia and protected private industry.

Read Malayalathinde Bhaavi-Bhasha Asoothranavum, Maanava Vikasanavum” (The Future of malayalam - Language Planning and Human Devolopment) in Malayalam written by K. Sethu Raman published by Maathrubhoomi Books for further details and analysis.