10. They Can’t … They Shan’t

13 05 2010

 [Originally published in ELT Chat of http://www.Free_esl.com on 15th August 2007, the day India celebrated its sixtieth year of Independence] ]

Half a century ago an Indian scholar of repute, C. Rajagopalachari, made the following statement. : “We in our anger and the hatred against the British people should not throw away the baby (English) with the bath water (English People) Years have passed and ELT in India received several jolts . The following composition attempts to capture the essence of the impact.

Neither Can’t nor Shan’t

We shouldn’t ….we cannot Speak like the Britisher

 Said the Raja to the Praja

And the Raja sprayed an Indian flavour

And the Praja preferred the Indian savour

Shun RP….Shun King’s English

Shun BBC accent….Shun Daniel Jones

Are slogans that echoes and re-echoes.

And shun and spun they did indeed …

Spun Hinglish , Spun Manglish

 And other inglishes to ones ease

 What Shakespeare ….What Joyce

What choice for ‘em without poise

They shan’t teach …they won’t teach

But they’ll teach… who can’t teach!


 Glossary Raja: The renowned Indian writer whose writing smacked of an Indian idiom Praja: The word in most Indian languages means the public/ the citizens.




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