Lighten up with local linguist

Rajend Mesthrie.

Why do South African English-speakers say “now-now”, or “rock up”, or the ubiquitous “shame”?

Helderberg U3A’s March guest speaker Rajend Mesthrie may just enlighten you with his light-hearted presentation “What makes us tick? South African English and its multilingual contexts.”

His presentation will be on Wednesday March 6, at Strand Town Hall, at 10am.

Rajend is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Cape Town, where he holds a National Research Foundation chair in Migration, Language and Social Change.

He also holds an NRF A-rating as a researcher in the field of linguistics.

He is a past head of the Linguistics Section at UCT, a past President of the Linguistics Society of Southern Africa, past co-editor of English Today, and President of the International Congress of Linguists.

Among his many publications are Language in South Africa, World Englishes, Dictionary of South African Indian English and the widely used textbook Introducing Sociolinguistics.

He has also undertaken numerous research and conference visits and has lectured widely in India, the USA, the UK, the
EU, the Caribbean and within Africa.

Rajend was born in Umkomaas on the south coast
of KwaZulu-Natal and relocated
to Cape Town in the mid-1980s.

He is well known as a former broadcaster on SAFM’s Word of Mouth with John Orr, and as an occasional commentator on local radio stations on language matters.

His wife Uma is a noted historian at UWC and his daughter Sapna is now a young trainee lawyer in the city.

Among his hobbies are walking and soccer when his joints permit it, and reading and talking to his cats when they don’t.

The doors open at 9.30am, when tea and coffee will be available.

For more information, call Brodwyn at 083 604 0784.