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Old 05-06-2016, 06:16 AM
pdw pdw started this thread
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
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South Africa tends to have a reputation overseas for being a very English country, but what I've read about the country makes it appear that this is not the case. It seems that Afrikaans predominates over English just about everywhere in the entire country outside of Durban, but people overseas tend to confuse ESL Afrikaners as native English speakers in the media. Is this true? Obviously there are English-speaking neighbourhoods in the major cities, but other than that it is pretty much a second language only? Besides that, do very many native English speakers have no knowledge of other languages or are they virtually all multilingual at this point? What about the working class?
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Old 05-06-2016, 10:39 AM
 
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I met a white south African in Brazil that only speaks English. No knowledge in Afrikaner or African languages and he told me that is very common between whites with English heritage.
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Old 05-06-2016, 11:04 AM
 
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There are a lot of us Most of us can understand a fair bit of Afrikaans and basic Zulu. Afrikaans was mandatory in school from about Grade 3 upwards. Zulu was more so only in Grade 6 and 7. I know they'll sometimes include Xhosa or Zulu in the Medical degrees to help them out in the more rural areas and public hospitals.

Other than that everyone can speak English.

Vir my, ek kan net n bietjie Afrikaans verstaan maar eks kak
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Old 05-06-2016, 01:17 PM
 
Location: Geneva, IL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdw View Post
South Africa tends to have a reputation overseas for being a very English country, but what I've read about the country makes it appear that this is not the case. It seems that Afrikaans predominates over English just about everywhere in the entire country outside of Durban, but people overseas tend to confuse ESL Afrikaners as native English speakers in the media. Is this true? Obviously there are English-speaking neighbourhoods in the major cities, but other than that it is pretty much a second language only? Besides that, do very many native English speakers have no knowledge of other languages or are they virtually all multilingual at this point? What about the working class?

I'd say most Southern Africans speak a mish-mash of languages. Most South Afrikans understand Afrikaans even if they are not fluent. Many people know the basics of other languages, especially the common ones like Xhosa and Zulu. English is definitely the most widely understood.

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Originally Posted by dowsieboi View Post
Vir my, ek kan net n bietjie Afrikaans verstaan maar eks kak

Ek ook!
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Old 05-06-2016, 05:34 PM
pdw pdw started this thread
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
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I think some people are confused by my question. By monolingual, I am wondering about first-language native speakers of English who are only fluent in that language.
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Old 05-08-2016, 02:52 PM
 
Location: Metro West, MA
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A decent percentage of "English" South Africans, especially those over 40ish, only speak English. Aside from my father-in-law, who was a signalman in the SADF, his entire family only speaks English.

But as mentioned, Afrikaans is spoken by more people than English and most English people have at least some understanding of it. I lived in SA for 7 years and you almost have to go out of your way to not learn some Afrikaans and Zulu/Xhosa.
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Old 05-12-2016, 07:02 AM
 
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Do all people in S.A. who have Afrikaner or African languages as mother language speak English??

There is difference of accent in English among South Africans with English mother tongue speaker and Afrikaners mother's tongue speaker ?
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Old 05-12-2016, 07:15 AM
 
Location: Geneva, IL
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Having been born and raised in southern Africa I have never met anyone who cannot understand some languages other than their Mother tongue. Honestly you would not survive if you only knew, understood and spoke one language.


Yes, there is a very big difference in accent between English and Afrikaans speakers, but there are a few people people who are completely bilingual English/Afrikaans who have very little accent. English speakers from different regions have different accents, as do Afrikaans speakers. An example would be English speakers from the Northern Cape have an extremely different accent than those from Durban, some would even say it's a different dialect of South African English.
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Old 05-12-2016, 09:10 AM
pdw pdw started this thread
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
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Also wondering, do Indian South Africans speak the same dialect of English as South Africans of British background? Do they tend to live in the same towns/villages due to a common language?
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Old 05-12-2016, 02:38 PM
 
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Thanks for the response!!
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