Taal en hegemonie : die ontwikkeling van Afrikaans as uitsaaitaal, 1923-1948
Lochner, Johanna Elizabeth
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This study investigated the development of Afrikaans as a broadcast language against the background of the Afrikaner's hegemonic struggle during the first half of the previous century. The following research question was posed: What influence did the Afrikaner's hegemonic struggle have on the development of Afrikaans as a broadcast language, from 1923-1948? The study postulated that changes in the Afrikaner's cultural, economic and political position determined the position and status of Afrikaans as an official and a broadcast language. Gramsci's (1982) hegemonic perspective, which explains how one group achieves dominance over another group or groups in society, was used as theoretical approach to this question. This dominance, which manifests as consensual control, is negotiated by the state whilst moral and intellectual leadership are accomplished in civil society. The theory of hegemony was applied, focusing on the terrain on which hegemony is negotiated. The point of departure is that institutions in civil society, as vehicles of culture and ideology, persuade subjugated groups to agree to their own domination. Through historical research this study determined the impact of cultural, economic and political developments in the external framework on the internal framework of broadcasting, and the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) since 1936, focusing specifically on the status of Afrikaans as a broadcast language. Therefore, the field of study was also typified as media policy. Afrikaner nationalism as organic ideology opposed British dominance in cultural, economic and political spheres. Initially, the aim was to give Afrikaner culture equal status with English culture, but in order to achieve this, the ideology grew organically to include both economic and political motives. In the attainment of each of these goals, the ethnic leaders used the Afrikaans language as both a unifying and mobilising symbol. This was primarily due to the language focus of the two primary organic intellectuals of the time, general JBM Hertzog and dr DF Malan whose articulation of Afrikaner nationalism was interpreted and executed by other organic intellectuals, including those in broadcasting. The Afrikaner's hegemonic struggle was mainly conducted in civil society by the group's organic institutions, namely the National Party, the Afrikaner Broederbond, the Federasie vir Afrikaanse Kultuurverenigings, the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Taal, Lettere en Kuns/Wetenskap en Kuns and the Afrikaans newspapers, who used the issue of the status of Afrikaans in their functioning as vehicles of Afrikaner nationalism. In contrast, the broadcast industry, specifically the Corporation, was a terrain of the Afrikaner's hegemonic struggle rather than a vehicle of their ideology. The success of this hegemonic struggle was reflected in the status of the Afrikaans language. As the Afrikaner developed from a counter-hegemonic group at the beginning of this study period to gaining political power at the end of it, Afrikaans developed from an unofficial language to a broadcast language equal in status to English.
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