[Toegepaste Taalwetenschap in Artikelen 16A] 1983
► pp. 68–82
A speaker whom you cannot localize by means of his speech, uses a Standard Language. In order to teach this language you need a grammar and dictionaries in which its norms have been fixed. Many Dutch speaking people have a linguistic minority complex: they prefer speaking foreign languages and are not interested in the norms of their mother tongue. Maybe this explains why Standard Dutch norms have been fixed only relatively late. Van Dale's Groot Woordenboek der Nederlandse Taal functions as a kind of unofficial Standard Dictionary, but a Standard Grammar of Dutch does not exist and is only to appear in 3 984: the Algemene Nederlandse Spraakkunst. The language situation in Flanders (the Dutch speaking part of Belgium), is probably unique in Europe in that the average intellectual does not master a standard language, and instead uses a mixture, composed of his dialect and Standard Dutch. So here the need of language norms at school is very great. In respect to language use there is an emergency state in Flanders. Whereas about 40 years ago a number of Flemings even wanted to create a separate southern variant of Standard Dutch, their influence is now rapidly decreasing, and Flemish schools need more than ever a plan for resolving the Standard problem as fast as possible. Hitherto this has failed, and so the schools have to rely upon booklets in which the most widespread dialect words and grammatical differences with Standard Dutch are treated. The whole process of standardisation in Flanders is severely delayed by an emotional problem: many Flemings have rather strong negative feelings towards the Dutch.
Article language: Dutch