Prof Nompumelelo Zondi from the Department of African Languages and Culture recently attended the 17th Annual African Languages Teachers Association, in conjunction with the 16th Annual Conference of the National Council of Less Commonly Taught Languages in the United States of America.
Delegates were housed at Eaglewood Resort and Spa in Chicago where valuable information on African languages and less commonly taught languages were shared at the Cottonwood Conference Venue. The trip was sponsored by the American Council of International Education and supported by UNIZULU’s subsistence allowance.
Zondi said: “I was privileged to be part of the gathering that brought together people who speak more than one language for the greater good of the world. I was honoured to be given an opening to make a presentation even though I had not initially registered as a presenter. I can say with confidence that my presentation on Promotion of Indigenous Languages in Post Democratic South Africa: A Reality or Wishful Thinking was well received.”
She said isiZulu has fast developed into a language of choice at US universities. “Some colleagues from neighbouring countries belonging to Nguni language group found the country to be providing an opportunity for them to develop their knowledge of isiZulu and the amazing thing is that they end up teaching it there. This is a challenge for Zulu nationals, to take their language seriously and not to give away such opportunities,” said Zondi.