JustRecently has posted an excellent summary (including a link to this Global Times story) of the recent protests in Qinghai province surrounding the issue of Tibetan vs. Mandarin language education. This is clearly the crux of a great deal of speculation and hope and frustration about the future of the Tibetan culture and language both in the Tibetan Autonomous Region and in the vast areas to the East and North of the T.A.R. where Tibetans live and endeavor to foster a distinctive cultural identity. Which is one reason why I’m lending my shoulder ever so slightly to efforts by Tashi Tsering in Lhasa to smash out yet another updated version of his trilingual dictionary.
I always think it is fascinating how powerful language can be. As seen here, even the most basic aspects of it can give rise to huge debates and conflicts.
Absolutely, thanks NC. Tom Lasseter in Beijing did some further writing about this issue in Tibet last year…
I just read the summary of the Tibetans having issue with accepting the Chinese language in schools. The students who are demonstrating is surprisingly middle schoolers and I like how they put that the demonstration one morning was peaceful. I found it cool that middle schoolers are standing up for their language and trying to stop the extending policies of the Chinese langauge.