I didn't want to pick a fight with Tun.He probably heard them all, anyway, on this language issue esp. on using English for Maths and Sci (which I don't agree with). But I will raise the issue on "we are still the same person" thingy with Prof Y (who will be at the Dept for another month).The whole discussion took me back to a lecture I once heard from Prof Naguib Alatas who said whatever changes one has (even other creations of Allah) would make one a different person.I asked his 'disciple', Prof Wan, what theoretical f/work is this.Prof Wan text-ed me back:
His framework rests on God's continuos creation of similar but not the same creation. Every instant new creation is being created, annihilated and recreated, it is not the same but similar object.
The question is: are we the same people when we know of another tongue (which sometimes is spoken more often than our own mother tongue).Tun and our Prof said we are.I argue we are not.Even the Quran says "Adakah sama orang yang berilmu dan tidak?" Language is ilmu (and this is Tun's argument but he seems to think ilmu comes ONLY in English which is the point of contention for most nationalists and intellectuals). For most post-colonial critics, we are concerned with the argument raised by Philipson who had for so long argued in his book Linguistic Imperialism on how English is packaged as a language of modernity, language of knowledge especially language of science and technology, etc.Most third world countries bite this bait and English teaching/learning becomes an industry.I'm not saying stop learning and teaching English (it's also my periuk nasi).What I don't like is we are marginalising or limiting our opportunities learning new languages (which include Mandarin, German, French, Turkish and ESPECIALLY Arabic).It's our loss if we are so besotted with just one global language.
If, according to Prof Wan, argument is made based on cultural-pragmatic lines and done in a narrow econ-political sense and that it's all made on a platform of power...huff and puff..intellectuals of this country still have a long way to go.