Constitutionalising Language: A Dialogue

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningfagfællebedømt

This paper explores the constitutional accommodation of minority languages through a process of dialogue between the President of a Constitutional Council and a constitutional expert. The main goal is to reproduce a possible dialogue in a constituent process in order to accommodate the different existing languages in a new born state. The discussion began remarking upon the enormous significance of language in political, identity and constitutional terms. It follows comparing different constitutional systems in the world and the status of minority languages in Argentina, Bolivia, Croatia, Serbia, South Africa, the states parties of the Nordic Language Convention and the United States. While most of the paper is a detailed analysis of US constitutional decisions, the treatment of the other countries seems to be highly relevant to the constitutional accommodation of languages in the new state. The paper emphasises the international human right to language, and proposes an accommodation strategy in which the traditional majority language forms the lingua franca, other major languages are granted equal official status, and the government promotes and respects important minority languages. The paper concludes proposing a solution based on the South African approach.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftKing´s Law Journal
Vol/bind25
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)255-270
Antal sider16
ISSN0961-5768
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 1 okt. 2014

ID: 120464847