In 2010 the Chinese government revealed plans to replace Tibetan with Chinese language as the medium of instruction in schools in Amdo, eastern Tibet. Thousands of Tibetan students took to the streets to defend their fundamental right to study in their mother tongue, something which may strike a chord who still feel the Irish culture may have been hurt by the enforcement of speaking English – though it’s an incredibly useful one to grow up with as a first language today!
Language has become a flashpoint of resistance against China’s marginalisation of Tibetan culture and sparked a solidarity movement in exile as Tibetans and their supporters everywhere take action to promote Tibetan language on the global stage.
News arose yesterday of a Tibetan man who was arrested for singing in public. He has been released on bail on an assurance of good conduct from his family but had been taken into custody after he sang a song at a public concert in Sichuan Province on May 24th calling for the protection of the Tibetan linguistic heritage.
China was listed fifth worst country in the world for Freedom of the Press in the 2014 report, (available to download here) so if you would like to be involved with helping to ensure the preservation of the Tibetan language you can find out more and sign a petition here.
We’re professional translators and love the work we do and the people we get to meet and the cultures we get to learn about through our translation agency. We love languages. So peaceful efforts to keep them all safe can be very important.