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A Remarkable Document in Arabic-Afrikaans: The Election Pamphlet of 1884

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Chapter Summary

The writings in Arabic-Afrikaans by Abu Bakr and others predate the official status of the language and constitutes an important step towards the establishment of a norm for written Afrikaans. It was a logical choice for Abu Bakr to use the colloquial language for the instruction in Islam. The small document is perhaps the most interesting exception to the predominantly religious use of Arabic- Afrikaans. It is an election pamphlet from the 1884 campaign during the parliamentary elections, supporting the candidacy of Anders Ohlsson, a famous beer brewer from Cape Town. The setting of this election pamphlet is the parliamentary elections that took place in Cape Town in 1884, when it was a colony under British government. At the end of the 19th century, the official languages of the Cape Colony were English and metropolitan Dutch.

Keywords: Arabic script; Arabic-Afrikaans; Cape Town; colloquial language; election pamphlet; remarkable document



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