Fiji Time: 4:21 AM on Friday 9 October

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / News

Alarm over 'illiteracy'

Repeka Nasiko
Tuesday, July 15, 2014

FIJI National University academic Professor Subramani says the state of literacy in Fiji is deteriorating into a new wave of illiteracy.

"In nations like Fiji, which acquired literacy recently beginning in 1835 with the arrival of missionaries, it is quickly degenerating into a new illiteracy before becoming a fully literate state," he said.

"My definition of literate society is one which does more than just read and write, that is the minimum standard. A truly literate society derives pleasure and wisdom from the written word in all its forms — social, educational, intellectual, artistic and spiritual.

"Societies in the East and the West where literacy existed through a much longer period of time have the written word for all these purposes in the highest form."

He said countries such as Fiji from the post-colonial state had just started to publish their first books when it descended into illiteracy again.

"The first illiteracy is the inability to read and write. This new illiteracy that I am talking about is knowing how to read and write but the literate mind and the sensitivity for the written mind has not become established firmly and has started to decay.

"The younger generation, before the written word could forge its hold, it started to lose its appeal.

"The illiteracy that I am talking about begins indeed at illiteracy where our students cannot read and write in their own language and in their own mother tongue."

He said some of the ways to improve literacy in the country would be to improve teacher education systems.

"Teacher education will have to, as the first step, theorise and learning more rigorously using the languages of postcolonial theory.

"Teacher education must search for a language of resistance to new illiteracy."

Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Code Inward TTs Outward TTs
CAD 0.61820.5992
JPY 57.328754.3287
GBP 0.30830.3003
EUR 0.42080.4088
NZD 0.72120.6882
AUD 0.65870.6337
USD 0.47500.4580



Exchange Rate updated on 8th October 2015

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Death classified as unnatural
  2. McKee's with Fiji
  3. Ganilau a nominee
  4. Big game
  5. Break-ins spark bid for private security
  6. Plan for 8-storey complex
  7. Duo get eight years each for rape
  8. Land reprieve aid
  9. Vanuabalavu Day Festival draws support
  10. 715 West teachers receive OHS, first aid training

Top Stories this Week

  1. Rugby outcry Monday (05 Oct)
  2. Fisherman has whale of a day Tuesday (06 Oct)
  3. Tired Wales march on after holding off feisty Fiji Friday (02 Oct)
  4. Man faces further charges of rape, indecent assault Friday (02 Oct)
  5. Family robbed, fear for lives Monday (05 Oct)
  6. Mum upset Wednesday (07 Oct)
  7. The murders and tragedies of Vatuwaqa Tuesday (06 Oct)
  8. FRCA duo sent home Wednesday (07 Oct)
  9. Sex offenders top list, taxpayers foot $15,660 per day Tuesday (06 Oct)
  10. Fiji thrash Uruguay 47-15 Wednesday (07 Oct)