Language Situation in Mauritius

Essay by faatimahnetUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, January 2007

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Mauritius is an island located in the Indian Ocean having a population which exceeds 1.2 million inhabitants including Rodrigues and four islands.


English is the official language of Mauritius. It is used in parliamentary and judiciary system and for administrative purposes. English is the medium of instruction at primary, secondary and tertiary level. Though English is the national language of Mauritius, the census report of 1990 reveals that it is spoken by only 0.21% of the Mauritian population . However it should be noted that many Mauritians can read, write and speak English since English language is compulsory up to School Certificate Level and the General Paper which is in English language is obligatory on all those sitting for the Higher School Certificate. English language is not widely used in the Mauritian media. We have only News on Sunday which is dedicated wholly to the English language.

Very few articles are written in English in the other Mauritian newspapers. Even in Mauritian radio and television channels we do not have many programs in English apart from the news. Not many English based language movies are televised by the "Mauritius Broadcasting Corporation (MBC)". Debates are not done in English. Yet there is the promotion of English language in Mauritius. Through the recent introduction of the new international channels by the MBC in Mauritius, the English language is becoming more accessible to the Mauritians as they will be exposed to "Skynews" and "BBC News". Even the British council is propping up the English language in Mauritius through its library where Mauritians who are members have contact with English books, magazines and films.


Since Mauritius has been under the French rule prior to that of the British, French language has been left as a legacy...