Language Policy History in China
Colonialism would better explain the foundation of the present Chinese language policy. The system was established to attain specific goals that comprised improved national unity, economy development, and lowered levels of illiteracy.
Notably, before the twentieth century, the Chinese governments did not realize the language challenges which were a source of economy deterioration to China Later in 1949 the communist government promoted the linguistic policies which supported only báihuà as the common language. Also, the Putonghua language was curtailed the same time. In the mid-1950s, minor actions were done to reform the language. In October 1955, the National Script reform Congress discussed on the modifications simplification of the ancient logographic script and the ways to boost national language studies. The common language was described as Putonghua.
In 1956, the Chinese state ordered the teaching of the Mandarin Chinese in learning institutions. In fact, it gave clear illustrations of how to this would be effectively implemented. Such effort did not succeed as it stopped during the inception of the Cultural Revolution. The variation of the writing system was the primary concern of the Committee on Script Reform where the initial step occurred in 1956 that ensured publication of 515 characters. It needed either simplification alphabetization, or latinization.
According to DeFrancis, language policy in China has been identified by status, corpus and acquisition planning dimensions. Notably, the status plan describes the strategies that allocate the functions of the language for a community speech. On the other hand, corpus planning deals with the availability of the literacies forms while acquisition planning illustrates the creation of opportunities and incentives for learners to obtain new languages. The situation offers an appropriate interaction between the Chinese and foreign countries effectively.
Significantly, Liu illustrates that the interest to use of different language arose from bullies in the 19th century by the Western people. Therefore, the government started advocating the importance of learning and understanding distinct languages despite the fact that there was resistance to the change. In fact, the conservationists thought that it would result in the dilution of their culture. The Chinese government enhanced adequate resources to boost foreign language knowledge where the Chinese accessed modern innovations necessary to sustain their territories. The reformists followed the western cultures and conservationists wanted to maintain their values and language.
Indeed, the social, political and distinct ideologies contexts have an impact on the existing multi-language cultures in China. The language ideologies have contributed significantly to the language policy with prioritization being made on the languages to select. The circumstance benefits China’s economy enormously. The Chinese national policy promotes both the regional and cultural sovereignty, and everyone has the right to use the preferred language
The Foreign Language Education Planning (FLEP) has been a victim of political hustle involving economic reforms in China for more than six decades. The process started in 1949 when Western imperial powers bullied Qing’s government. The government decided to embrace modern diplomacy in order to enhance interactions with more foreign nations.