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Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! - Culture - Nairaland

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Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by spoilt(f): 6:55pm On Mar 18, 2007
I am very ashamed to tell people that i can't speak my local language well. I don't know how it happened but as a child my parents would speak igbo to us. we would always reply in english. its really wierd. we never really went to the village often too. my parents did everything to get us to speak it and it just didn't happen. part of the problem was that in lagos where we lived, most people communicated in english or pidgin or yoruba.at school we spoke english.(most of my primary school teachers were white).

i try to speak it anyway but my accent is so funny and people laugh. embarassed. but at least im trying!!!

what do you think about this? is this a common trend.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Seun(m): 6:43pm On Mar 29, 2007
You have nothing to be ashamed of. With fewer languages in the world, we'll understand each other better!

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Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by spoilt(f): 7:23pm On Mar 29, 2007
seun you're not serious. im sure you speak yoruba well. grin
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Nobody: 11:40pm On Mar 29, 2007
Spoilt
spoilt:

I am very ashamed to tell people that i can't speak my local language well. what do you think about this? is this a common trend.

How can someone grow up in Nigeria and not speak their local language?
Sadly this is much too common with Igbos,it is a shame.
For a small fee,I can give brush up lessons

1 Like

Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by laudate: 3:01pm On Mar 30, 2007
spoilt:

I am very ashamed to tell people that i can't speak my local language well. I don't know how it happened but as a child my parents would speak igbo to us. we would always reply in english. its really wierd. we never really went to the village often too. my parents did everything to get us to speak it and it just didn't happen. part of the problem was that in lagos where we lived, most people communicated in english or pidgin or yoruba.at school we spoke english.(most of my primary school teachers were white).

i try to speak it anyway but my accent is so funny and people laugh. embarassed. but at least im trying!!!

what do you think about this? is this a common trend.

I think it is sad when people don't speak their language, because they miss out on the proverbs, idioms & culture of their own community.

At least you are trying to learn it. Don't give up. Keep practising, even if people laugh at you. Simply continue the lessons. Tell them to teach you the correct pronounciation & intonation. Soon you will be fluent.

Practice makes perfect.

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Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by needeeg(m): 8:29pm On Mar 30, 2007
@Seun
That's not advice u know, hey gurl lemme tel u something u better do something about it in going to the village time to time maybe on hols or occationaly, cos this how ur children will be too, so if u really wanna speak ur language very well, u hv to do such!
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by ThiefOfHearts(f): 8:35pm On Mar 30, 2007
I tend not to take Nigerians that cant speak their home language seriously but you're actually trying to learn so that's good. smiley
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by omoge25(f): 9:29am On Apr 01, 2007
@spoilt, i feel your pain.
We came to america when i was 9 and I remember my dad trying to teach us our native language but after a week of giving us lessons he would always stop. He tried to teach us twice but work, bills and everyday life in america gets in the way.
my parents speak our native language to use and i hear what they are saying I just cant reply back.
My brothers and I speak pidgin, we eat naija food 24/7 in our house, I wear my naija attire, i go to a naija church, you name it i represent naija to the fullest but i cant speak my native tongue, very sad
I used to blame my parents for not teaching me but i dont anymore, my dad went home in 2001 and he tried to find a book that would teach me my native language but it is out of print, so no luck there
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Ndipe(m): 10:17am On Apr 01, 2007
My dear, if there is any group of people that shun their native dialect, my people, the Ibibios, would be a contender. Never have I witnessed the complex, some of them develop, when their dialect is spoken. Some could go so far to deny their heritage, or come up with a weak defense that they don't know how to speak the dialect. I went to Uniuyo, and it was always funny, that folks, who would yarn yoruba, pidgin, etc, would all of a sudden, queue up for bursary awards. For those who missed out on their cultural language, it is never too late to learn the language. The English man has his language, likewise, the Japanese, Indian, Korean, and some other nationalities. Cant we care for the preservation of our own dialect? Must we look up to the West even in communicating with one another?
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by finemocha(f): 7:48pm On Apr 01, 2007
babyosii

i will hire u oooo, my kids willl speak, spanish, french, igbo, and my boyfreinds language, when we get married
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by CrazyMan(m): 8:26pm On Apr 01, 2007
It's a shame a very big one.

Imagine you go to your place like say your, village and you're invited address some elders in your community, are you going to speak to them English?
that would look like an insult to them. learning languages isn't that hard especially when you have people around you that speak it.
If you can't speak your native tounge, you had better learn it's for your own good.

1 Like

Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by spoilt(f): 8:43pm On Apr 01, 2007
I went to Uniuyo, and it was always funny, that folks, who would yarn yoruba, pidgin, etc, would all of a sudden, queue up for bursary awards

@ ndipe
before nko? its their share of the national cake whether they speak ibibio or not. and hey, where in the bay area do u live?
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Ndipe(m): 10:14pm On Apr 01, 2007
Yeah, but not at the detriment of your local dialect. I live in California, and during elections, there are certain languages, like Viet and I think, Spanish that are included in that box, for some folks who can't speak English Language. It is quite worrisome that these languages are given priority over other ethnic group, but as they say, "There is strength in numbers". Quite ironic, I read an article about a Chinese man, who operates a restaurant in Chinatown in San Francisco. His restaurant is well regarded for its meals, but the man and his children have little knowledge of the Queen's language. Is it not ironic, that back home, some of our people try to feel among by speaking English first, or terming their own dialect as "bush"? If the Chinese, Japanese, Mexican, in this era of globalization, are keen on preserving their language, why do we resort to weak excuses that perhaps, we ought to abandon ours for the Queen's language? Already, Chinese Mandarin is quite booming in my neck of the wood, with some companies establishing a presence in China for business reasons.


@spoilt, I reside in one of the suburbs of San Jose, South bay area.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by uyai(f): 10:23pm On Apr 03, 2007
@ Ndipe u are right on point about us the ibibios

I went to AKS meeting one Sunday, you need to see how these people were cutting their tongues to speak english.

One of girls told me that she does not know how to speak the language, i wonder how she got her accent. ever since then i lost interest in the organization. The problem is we termed our OWN primary language " local" what is local about your tongue, your identity. We Nigerians we have a big problem and it all stems from inferiority complex.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Ndipe(m): 6:53am On Apr 04, 2007
Uyai, our people are experts at pretending not to speak Ibibio. Once, while I was speaking our Ibibio dialect in the confines of my place, my then neighbour's girlfriend, overheard me, and she, also an Ibibio woman, wondered why I was speaking that bush language. No, I am not kidding you. I wasnt surprised when my friend, who overheard her, told me. Our people have that mentality that our dialect should possibly be erased for the Queen's language. While the Mexicans, Viet, Chinese and other nationalities are keen on preserving their language, ours is to call for a permanent dissolution of our dialect for the sake of English language.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by 9ja4eva: 6:54am On Apr 04, 2007
Yeah i tink its a shame.

1 Like

Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by hola2ng(m): 12:31pm On Apr 04, 2007
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Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Nobody: 11:50pm On Apr 04, 2007
shame shame shame spoilt.
You need to be lashed with 40 strokes of koboko to hasten your Igbo speaking ability.

1 Like

Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by spoilt(f): 12:56am On Apr 05, 2007
@babyosisi
i havent stopped laughing. how about you give me some lessons for free. grin
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by GL(f): 1:05am On Apr 05, 2007
we should have language schools that offer crash courses in Nigerian languages. it's hard to learn your parents' languages at home if they are from different tribes because they'll very likely speak to each other in english or pidgin.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by 9ja4eva: 2:46am On Apr 05, 2007
babyosisi:

shame shame shame spoilt.
You need to be lashed with 40 strokes of koboko to hasten your Igbo speaking ability.

No kill me with laf oh abeg.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by yaoemi: 1:16am On May 08, 2007
Thousands of nigerians are not speaking their native language well, I have met a lot of people using mixed english and whatever. It gives people who are made to learn languages and some are not. For me its hard to learn a language and humans are lazy, they are choosing the easiest way, which was english. Don`t blame yourself, learn it now! Look for somebody who speak it to teach u. Greetings.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by ikamefa(f): 3:57am On May 08, 2007
awwwwwwwww @ topic embarassed

i will forever thank my mum & dad for making it hard for me to get anything(food,money) from them if i did not speak our local dialect when i was little grin

find an ibo friend who can teach you cheesy
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by laudate: 1:34pm On May 08, 2007
An author recently wrote a story that gives more insight into how the issue of language can affect kinship or family relationships in contemporary Nigeria. Here is an excerpt from that story:

Jude Dibia: from ANOTHER STRANGER
[font=Lucida Sans Unicode:


They say that language unites a people. That was the common saying. That was why wherever you may find yourself in the world, no matter how remote the place is, when you find someone who speaks your tongue, you are immediately brothers or sisters. You are one because your language unites you. My language instead alienates me from my people. It has made me an outcast, a stranger to my kinsmen. It was long coming and somehow I knew.
[/font]


www.blackbiro.com/dibia.htm+jude+dibia+another+stranger&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=ng">http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:kVqnnASJ5gMJ:www.blackbiro.com/dibia.htm+jude+dibia+another+stranger&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=ng
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by 9ja4eva: 8:56am On May 10, 2007
ikamefa:

awwwwwwwww @ topic embarassed

i will forever thank my mum & dad for making it hard for me to get anything(food,money) from them if i did not speak our local dialect when i was little grin

find an ibo friend who can teach you cheesy

Yeah dt was what happened in my case too.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by romeo(m): 9:43pm On Jul 15, 2007
bia nwa rere ule, o buru na ichoro ka m kuzieru gi igbo mara na i ga akwuta ezigbo ugwo cheesy
soso ofu onu ka m choro, ma na icho kwa inwere ike inye m onu abuo grin grin grin
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by chiogo(f): 10:16pm On Jul 15, 2007
lol@topic
ummm, i don't really think it's a shame but i wldn't give u a high-five on that. It's no biggie but am sure when i have kids, i'll def. teach them my language.
It's Kinda surprisin' that ur parents spoke ur language to u guys while u were growin' up but u still didn't learn it. that's funny 'cause that's how u learn it in d first place, listenin' to ur parents speak it. I can speak my language and my parents def. didn't sit me down and teach me. It's just a natural thin' u learn.I have cousins who were born in naija but they can't speak igbo, that's 'cause their parents spoke english to them and they went to all these preppy skools where only english is spoken, no vernacular watsoever. that is understandable but lately, their parents saw it wasn't good how they can't speak igbo, so now they only speak igbo to them and they are learnin' and even speak a little. it's been long i saw them. am sure they're perfect now. So, u really do need to learn it 'cause it gives u a sense of identity and pride. u know, at skool pple ask me stuffs in my language and i respond proudly.At first, i felt shy about it. idk why naija pple do that lol, but i noticed that spanish pple here speak their language very proudly in skool with their pple and i wonder, "if they can speak it proudly, why can't i speak mine proudly too?" Even spanish pple who were born here in d states, they can all speak spanish, am so serious. I have never met a spanish person who cannot speak spanish. never! They're so proud of it. that's why. So, i advise u keep learnin'.That'd help.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by Tats(m): 2:06am On Jul 16, 2007
Really cant say its a shame too. I can't speak my native language very well as I usually have to construct the words first before speaking it out, and I dont know so many words too. A combo of English and my langage was used at home, but english was used more often amongst my siblings. My parents tried to speak our language as often as they could to us, but it didn't stick and boarding house didnt make learning it any better.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by initiator(m): 3:38pm On Jul 16, 2007
Well m'story is kinda different.

My folks spoke igbo to us but we replied in english and a primary sch where pupils lived on street fighter & mortal combat games did not help. Then i went 2 the east for boarding school where those hawkish aba and onitsha boys made we 'lagos boys' feel like outcasts cos we didnt speak igbo. I had to learn to speak to those who couldnt just comunicate well in english but still i had to think alot. University in lagos didnt help the language cos most of m'igbo pals were more english than the queen. But i stuck to an igbo pal in uni who was very igbotic and i tried feeling bonded with a lot of engl-igbo.

As a way out i'd try to dump my kids in the village when i start a family and get some language lessons - children cope better with multiple languages than adults.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by dominobaby(f): 3:39pm On Jul 16, 2007
I thank God i learnt my language right on time, just that i can only speak my town's dialect, i aint fluent with the general igbo being spoken, though i understand it. My problem is that i can't write it and i aint happy with that!
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by tpia: 6:08pm On Jul 16, 2007
I really don't think its the end of the world if someone can't speak their language. As long as you can communicate in some form. And no matter what, there'll probably always be some people speaking the language, even if its only in the village.

However, I understand people's concern.
Re: Isn't It A Shame When You Can't Speak Your Mother Tongue?! by hola2ng(m): 10:54am On Jul 25, 2007
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