Afrikaans as a subject is offered in nine European countries, at five American universities as well as in Namibia.
Why does Afrikaans as a subject receive attention in other parts of the world?
The reason is that Afrikaans is one of the youngest Germanic languages in the world, therefore, knowledge of the language can give an individual cultural insight into Africa, thus allowing comparative studies in the fields of language, literature and culture.
Many farsighted academics realise the value of multilingualism and therefore they stimulate the teaching of Afrikaans and other South African languages. To this end, Afrikaans is offered in the United Kingdom, Russia, Poland, Austria, Germany, the Czech Republic, The Netherlands, Belgium, the United States, China and Namibia.
Byron Sherman teaches Afrikaans at Beijing University – the top institution for language research and teaching in China. Their focus is the promotion of African languages and they are now also offering Zulu and Xhosa. Byron says that they use three languages in class, as comparisons with English are often useful.
Watch this video where Byron’s students are analysing the lyrics of an Afrikaans song, Kinders van die Wind.
Afrikaans in Russia
Six Russian students visited South Africa earlier in 2017. They study Afrikaans as second additional language at the Lomonosov Moscow State University’s Institute for Asiatic and African languages.
Watch this video to hear them speak Afrikaans
On the website, Open Languages, you can learn Afrikaans for free.
Afrikaans as subject at tertiary institutions overseas. Click here
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