Linguistic Rights

1544 Words Feb 6th, 2012 7 Pages
Linguistic rights (or language rights or linguistic human rights) are the human and civil rights concerning the individual and collective right to choose the language or languages for communication in a private or public atmosphere. Other parameters for analyzing linguistic rights includes degree of territoriality, amount of positivity, orientation in terms of assimilation or maintenance, and overtness.
Linguistic rights include, among others, the right to one's own language in legal, administrative and judicial acts, language education, and media in a language understood and freely chosen by those concerned.
Linguistic rights in international law are usually dealt in the broader framework of cultural and educational rights.
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* Article 10 - individuals are entitled to a fair trial, and this is generally recognized to involve the right to an interpreter if an individual does not understand the language used in criminal court proceedings, or in a criminal accusation. The individual has to right to have the interpreter translate the proceedings, including court documents. * Article 19 - individuals have the right to freedom of expression, including the right to choose any language as the medium of expression. * Article 26 - everyone has the right to education, with relevance to the language of medium of instruction.
Linguistic rights can be applied to the private arena and the public domain.
[edit] Sri Lanka
See also: Sinhala Only Act
The start of the conflict regarding languages in Sri Lanka goes as far back as the rule of the British. During the colonial period, English had a special and powerful position in Sri Lanka. The British ruled in Sri Lanka from the late eighteenth century to 1948. English was the official language of administration then. Just before
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