Mozambique: In defense of native languages

Xangana, Xitswa, Ndau, Nhugwe, Macua, and Chuabo“I think the national languages are our heritage that most deserves to be saved, and the way we can do is passing them (languages) on to our children”.


  • Edilzia

    I think that native laguages must be keep so that we can know exactly from where we are coming.

  • […] fazendo a sua parte: ensinando ao seu filho a língua materna que o identifica como cidadão. Em en e […]

  • I think it’s time for there to be a strong concerted backlash against blindly marching into Westernization without stopping to pause, reflect and appreciate the past. It is the surest way to ensure our kids have no identity if we keep marching to another man’s tune and forget the symphonies that our ancestors created for us.

  • Djaisti

    Hi everyone…

    It tears my heart apart to see parents beating up or scolding their children for using native languages. Some even forbid their kids to be around their neighbors of the same age clamming that they will learn bad habits and one of them is to speak the native languages.

    The people should understand that that is a Cultural Imperialism which is being implemented to the Developing Countries. Food, Clothes, Habits, Languages these are all exported to our nations to spoil us and in fact forget who we are: that is shameful.
    I am studying abroad and we are a group of 20 Mozambicans and about 17 of us are from Maputo. From these 7 do not speak none of the native langagues. So besides Portuguese and English we also speak Xangana, Chope, xitswa.
    When we do speak these native languages they become isolated, and hate us for knowing them, and moreover hate themselves for not knowing them and some do blame their parents for not knowing these langagues.

    If a person says that “not speaking native languages is being civilized” then this person really need a great help to civilize his mind indeed.

    Some of these brothers and patriots of mine do their best to pick up some words and expressions from the native languages we use, some are learning fast. I speak fluently Chope and Xangana and I am proud of that for the native languages are PROUDLY MOZAMBICAN, A SYNONYM OF OUR IDENTITY ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD.

    We have to learn to be who we are and not be shamed and thing it’s uncivilized.

    I thank everybody who socialize towards this issue and Hope that we do not do the same our fathers did to us: Not Allowing our brothers and sisters to know their Identity.

    The slavery era is OVER. Let us not tie ourselves to the principles of Colonialism and Slavery any longer.

  • It is counter to our thinking, but the work of Christian missionaries has done a lot to preserve native languages in Africa and around the world. One of the goals of the missionaries is to allow people to read the Bible in their own language. In many cases the missionaries were the first to reduce the language to writing. Additionally, by translating the Bible into the language of the people, they encouraged people to learn to read & write in their own tongue, and thereby build and preserve a written body of literature. A great point of view on this comes from the writings of Lamin Sanneh, in particular “Translating the Message.”

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