53. Bastard-Sprachen

Die ägyptische Zeitung Al-Ahram weekly (Nr. 686) spricht mit dem südafrikanischen Dichter Breyten Breytenbach, der in Paris lebt:

Of all his epithets — poet, writer, painter and activist — he seems most comfortable with poet. In Africa even the Flies are Happy: Selected Poems (1964-1977) is a good introduction to South Africa’s most celebrated bard. Next in line, though different in spirit, is Lady Love: Of Love and other Poems. …

Breytenbach feels most comfortable reciting his poetry in Afrikaans even though he prefers to write his political prose in English. „Afrikaans is a bastard language. Afrikaans is not a European language,“ Breytenbach stresses, explaining that the language contains traces of French, English and German as well as antiquated 17th century Dutch. He describes his mother tongue as a „tainted language“ with „Creole roots“. It was the language spoken by sailors from diverse parts of the world — people who spoke Malay, the languages of Madagascar, South Africa’s indigenous Khoi and Bantu peoples, and even Arabic. They were the captives and bondsmen and women of the Portuguese, Dutch and English slavers and colonial settlers.

Außerdem: Wie der palästinensische Dichter Mahmud Darwisch und der ägyptische Künstler Gamil Shafik die Kreuzigung Christi sehen.

/ April 2004

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