B1543 – Mandatory Welsh (Abolition of) Act. Watch

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Jammy Duel
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#41
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#41
(Original post by Miriam29)
At least you had the opportunity to embrace a musical instrument/interest in art if you had wanted to. If Welsh isn’t taught from a young age then I suspect a lack of exposure will lead to a downturn in interest to the detriment of national culture.
Having music lessons doesn't really given you the opportunity to embrace a musical instrument though, does it, and according to this site by the time there is any real amount of music in the curriculum the best window for introduction to music is already long gone. Out of the thousands of musical instruments, how many are common in music lessons? How about we narrow it down to the top dozen, in the US the following are the most common instruments:
1) Piano - kinda I guess given keyboards are common
2) Guitar - nope
3) Violin - nope
4) Drums - I guess technically yes, but not really
5) Saxophone - nope
6) flute - starting to spot a trend here
7) Cello
8) clarinet
9) Trumpet
10) Harp

In the top 10 instruments only two are likely to really be used in music lessons, and neither as they are known, and with basically no education in actually playing them or composing.

As for art, the interest in art will also almost certainly predate any sort of formal art education.

In both instances to really pursue an interest to any extent requires either extracurricular activities in school, or some form of tuition completely outside of school.

I do find it wonderful how in response to a poll showing overwhelming opposition to the current system, with a third believing Welsh should not be compulsory at all and another third believing it should be compulsory to a younger age the Welsh Government decided to double down on teaching Welsh by making even more Welsh mandatory despite the fact that only 18% support compulsory to 16, with a further 9% thinking compulsory to 18. A majority of those who stated an opinion believed it should not be compulsory beyond primary education.

There are enough leek wavers that will teach their children Welsh even if the English taxpayer won't pay for it to be able to "preserve the Welsh culture", it survived for centuries without that.
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Saracen's Fez
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#42
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#42
(Original post by The Mogg)
Which is something that only a small amount of the population (the nationalists) actually care about.
Factually untrue: https://gov.wales/welsh-language-con...017-march-2018
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Jammy Duel
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#43
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Which is inconsistent with other polling done, and it's unlikely to be a case of leading questions in the other polls given the other polling was commissioned by advocates. Interestingly following the link to the questionnaire does not actually go anywhere

The link also tells you far less than you want to make it out to be, for instance while most say the language is something to be proud of that does not necessarily mean they support compulsory Welsh.

Like to Speak Welsh/speak better tells you very little too, how badly do they want to do so and why aren't they doing it? I'd like to speak Latin but I don't care about it enough to actually go out there and learn it. With that survey you would have me down as somebody that cares about knowing Latin when the reality is I don't.

Even more importantly, we just have to look at Chart 2, you have a generation that have been forced to learn welsh, despite this even among those who have only just finished their forced learning not even half say they have any Welsh speaking ability and only a quarter say they can speak Welsh. Chart 3 shows that the Welsh speaking stats haven't changed over half a decade. The simple reality is that only about a fifth of the population care enough about Welsh to learn to speak it and then retain that ability, more than half can't even be bothered to lean it in the first place despite being forced to.

I would also wager the age demographic data won't change meaningfully, the 19% of 16-24 year olds who say they can't speak but have some ability will lose that ability because it is unimportant to them, some of those who can speak will use Welsh so little that 10 years they will say they only have some ability. This is in exactly the same way that in Year 9 I imagine many would say they have some French speaking ability (and I fully accept that to be a significantly lower standard) and within a year or two they will say they have none. My sister excelled at GCSE French, at 16 she might have said she has some French speaking ability, now she has none beyond the trivial.
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Saracen's Fez
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#44
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Which is inconsistent with other polling done, and it's unlikely to be a case of leading questions in the other polls given the other polling was commissioned by advocates. Interestingly following the link to the questionnaire does not actually go anywhere

The link also tells you far less than you want to make it out to be, for instance while most say the language is something to be proud of that does not necessarily mean they support compulsory Welsh.

Like to Speak Welsh/speak better tells you very little too, how badly do they want to do so and why aren't they doing it? I'd like to speak Latin but I don't care about it enough to actually go out there and learn it. With that survey you would have me down as somebody that cares about knowing Latin when the reality is I don't.

Even more importantly, we just have to look at Chart 2, you have a generation that have been forced to learn welsh, despite this even among those who have only just finished their forced learning not even half say they have any Welsh speaking ability and only a quarter say they can speak Welsh. Chart 3 shows that the Welsh speaking stats haven't changed over half a decade. The simple reality is that only about a fifth of the population care enough about Welsh to learn to speak it and then retain that ability, more than half can't even be bothered to lean it in the first place despite being forced to.

I would also wager the age demographic data won't change meaningfully, the 19% of 16-24 year olds who say they can't speak but have some ability will lose that ability because it is unimportant to them, some of those who can speak will use Welsh so little that 10 years they will say they only have some ability. This is in exactly the same way that in Year 9 I imagine many would say they have some French speaking ability (and I fully accept that to be a significantly lower standard) and within a year or two they will say they have none. My sister excelled at GCSE French, at 16 she might have said she has some French speaking ability, now she has none beyond the trivial.
It was a response to a particular, and particularly outrageous, claim, namely that the Welsh language is only cared about by a small number of 'nationalists'.

What Welsh-medium education has done is taken a language death situation and reversed language death, such that speaker numbers are now stable. The poor quality of Welsh teaching outside Welsh-medium education means that speaker numbers aren't rising as the government would like, but comparing the academic literature on Welsh from the 2000s and 2010s (which is generally positive) with that of the 1980s and 1990s (which basically assumes a tendency towards death) is quite stark.
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Jammy Duel
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#45
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
It was a response to a particular, and particularly outrageous, claim, namely that the Welsh language is only cared about by a small number of 'nationalists'.

What Welsh-medium education has done is taken a language death situation and reversed language death, such that speaker numbers are now stable. The poor quality of Welsh teaching outside Welsh-medium education means that speaker numbers aren't rising as the government would like, but comparing the academic literature on Welsh from the 2000s and 2010s (which is generally positive) with that of the 1980s and 1990s (which basically assumes a tendency towards death) is quite stark.
And it's uncanny how support for Welsh Nationalists and Welsh speaking overlap, a fifth of Wales supports Welsh Nationalists, a fifth speaks Welsh. It should also be noted that if Welsh were so close to death and is now very robust how come the stats do not really support that, the speaking of Welsh is barely higher among the young than the old, especially when considering there will be plenty of young Welsh speakers who can only speak Welsh because they have just been made to learn it and will forget it over the years, just like with MFLs

Your own source would suggest that, at the very least since the war, the Welsh speaking population has been stable and certainly not in decline.
Last edited by Jammy Duel; 1 month ago
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Saracen's Fez
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#46
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
And it's uncanny how support for Welsh Nationalists and Welsh speaking overlap, a fifth of Wales supports Welsh Nationalists, a fifth speaks Welsh. It should also be noted that if Welsh were so close to death and is now very robust how come the stats do not really support that, the speaking of Welsh is barely higher among the young than the old, especially when considering there will be plenty of young Welsh speakers who can only speak Welsh because they have just been made to learn it and will forget it over the years, just like with MFLs

Your own source would suggest that, at the very least since the war, the Welsh speaking population has been stable and certainly not in decline.
Because language death situations involve a much higher number of older speakers than younger speakers, tending towards no younger speakers at all. Those were the apparent prospects for the Welsh language 30 years ago. Having stable numbers across generations is absolutely characteristic of reversed language shift.

The number of Welsh speakers fell at every post-war census of the 20th century.
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Baron of Sealand
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#47
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
Section 3 is potentially an issue because the Principality of Wales was abolished c. 1536.

But it is important that all children in Wales leave school as fluent, competent users of both national languages. It's the people who complain now that Welsh is a waste of time that will be complaining in a few years that all the well-paid jobs require Welsh.
Why would any well-paid job requires one to speak Welsh?
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Saracen's Fez
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#48
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
Why would any well-paid job requires one to speak Welsh?
Because the public sector in Wales operates bilingually.
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Jammy Duel
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#49
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
Because language death situations involve a much higher number of older speakers than younger speakers, tending towards no younger speakers at all. Those were the apparent prospects for the Welsh language 30 years ago. Having stable numbers across generations is absolutely characteristic of reversed language shift.

The number of Welsh speakers fell at every post-war census of the 20th century.
Which is inconsistent with Charts 2 and 3 which shows the silent generation, boomers, gen x all speaking welsh at a fairly consistent rate with a slight uptick for millenials and early gen z which, as already stated, could be accounted for by them not forgetting useless **** yet. Compulsory Welsh for those 3-16 over the last few decades would not account for that since most of Wales will not have been taught that Welsh, in other words people teaching themselves were keeping the language alive, and as already stated it should not come as a surprise that when ~20% of the country are nationalists ~20% of the country will choose to teach their children Welsh even if the state won't.
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BlueIndigoViolet
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#50
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Not a MHoC member - but great idea
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Baron of Sealand
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#51
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
Because the public sector in Wales operates bilingually.
And "all the well-paid jobs" in Wales are in the public sector?
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Jammy Duel
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#52
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#52
(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
And "all the well-paid jobs" in Wales are in the public sector?
One of the defining features of the public sector is how few of them are well paid, which would suggest that either Fez is speaking crap or ther private sector stays well away from Wales
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Saracen's Fez
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#53
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(Original post by Baron of Sealand)
And "all the well-paid jobs" in Wales are in the public sector?
In much of Wales a much larger than usual proportion of them are, yes.

(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Which is inconsistent with Charts 2 and 3 which shows the silent generation, boomers, gen x all speaking welsh at a fairly consistent rate with a slight uptick for millenials and early gen z which, as already stated, could be accounted for by them not forgetting useless **** yet. Compulsory Welsh for those 3-16 over the last few decades would not account for that since most of Wales will not have been taught that Welsh, in other words people teaching themselves were keeping the language alive, and as already stated it should not come as a surprise that when ~20% of the country are nationalists ~20% of the country will choose to teach their children Welsh even if the state won't.
To reiterate, the concern from the previous trend was that the most recent generation or two would show a significant decline in the number of Welsh speakers. This decline has not taken place, due to increased bilingual education (not the same as the teaching of second-language Welsh in English-medium schools) and assertion of language rights meaning that Welsh could be used a lot more. Far from the stable ~20% figure being a result of 20% of the parents passing the language on to their children, a significant number (perhaps even a majority) of Welsh speakers amongst the current generation of adolescents and young adults will have learnt their Welsh not through intergenerational transmission but through the school system.

Or in a more academic way, this is how Deuchar and Davies (2009) put it:
In 2001, the percentage of the population speaking Welsh rose for the first time in a hundred years from 18.7% in 1991 to 20.8% in 2001. As Figure 4 shows, this rise can be attributed to a considerable increase in young people (under 25) speaking the language. Whereas in 1981, like 1971, a greater proportion of older people spoke Welsh than younger people, this trend had been reversed by 2001, when we can see that a greater proportion of younger people than older people speak Welsh. Just as a predominance of older speakers of a language is often taken to be indicative of a language in decline, a greater proportion of younger speakers can be taken to suggest a better future for the language. The increasing proportion of younger speakers of Welsh may well be attributable to the growth of bilingual education in Wales (see, e.g., Baker and Prys Jones 2000) but also to other aspects of the revitalisation of Welsh, including the Welsh Language Act of 1993 and the establishment of the Welsh Language Board (see Williams 2000), followed by the establishment of the National Assembly for Wales in 1999. In 2003 the National Assembly published Iaith Pawb (‘Everyone’s language’), described as a ‘‘National Action Plan for a Bilingual Wales’’.

Under the current socio-political circumstances, therefore, a matrix language turnover from Welsh to monolingual English seems unlikely, as does the demise of Welsh which Thomas (1982) predicted. On the contrary,Welsh would seem to be a plausible candidate for a successful case of reversing language shift (cf. Fishman 1991) and to be at the final stage of this, which Fishman (1991: 107) describes as ‘‘some use of Xish in higher level educational, occupational, governmental and media efforts (but without the additional safety provided by political independence)’’. As Fishman (1991: 109) points out, however, ‘‘‘eternal vigilance’ is necessary’’. Linguists could certainly participate in this vigilance by analysing future corpora for any signs of a matrix language turnover.
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Jammy Duel
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#54
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
In much of Wales a much larger than usual proportion of them are, yes.



To reiterate, the concern from the previous trend was that the most recent generation or two would show a significant decline in the number of Welsh speakers. This decline has not taken place, due to increased bilingual education (not the same as the teaching of second-language Welsh in English-medium schools) and assertion of language rights meaning that Welsh could be used a lot more. Far from the stable ~20% figure being a result of 20% of the parents passing the language on to their children, a significant number (perhaps even a majority) of Welsh speakers amongst the current generation of adolescents and young adults will have learnt their Welsh not through intergenerational transmission but through the school system.

Or in a more academic way, this is how Deuchar and Davies (2009) put it:
But are you looking at a case of confirmation bias in there? The teaching of Welsh in schools today does not explain the lack of decline half a century ago, or if you want to put it another way a stalled decline. If we were to look at the same statistics 20 years ago it might be that the 75+ had more Welsh speakers, but that just shows a decline from the greatest generation to the silent generation-gen x/early millennials, 3.5 generations where you had stable Welsh speaking.

An increase in the noughties is to be expected, you're forcing it upon them, if you make people spend 13 years learning a language, some of whom would not otherwise learn it, then quite trivially the rate at which people will speak the language will increase. You also get that my hypothesis that the number of Welsh speakers born in any decade will decline over time stands:

"In 2001, the percentage of the population speaking Welsh rose for the first time in a hundred years from 18.7% in 1991 to 20.8% in 2001. As Figure 4 shows, this rise can be attributed to a considerable increase in young people (under 25) speaking the language."

The thing is this percentage has not increased further despite the suggestion being made logically resulting in increased Welsh speaking. I cannot see figure 4, enough places already have my details without dishing them out again for 1 chart, but one suspects it is very similar to the one 15 years later.

As for your point on intergenerational transmission is it largely irrelevant, more are learning in school than via intergenerational transmission relative to past years for the simple reason that more are getting taught it in school, my assertion is that in the absence of this state provided education the trend of the last century would continue. In other words, they're not being taught at home because they are being taught at school, if they weren't taught at school they would be taught at home.
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Saracen's Fez
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#55
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#55
(Original post by Jammy Duel)
In other words, they're not being taught at home because they are being taught at school, if they weren't taught at school they would be taught at home.
I reject this point, on the grounds that many (most?) of the children learning Welsh at school come from English-speaking homes where there is no other Welsh-speaker there to teach them Welsh.
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CatusStarbright
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#56
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I give a tentative nay on the basis that I think the Welsh language should be conserved, and that it is concerning for the London-based Parliament to be issuing this attempt to eradicate part of the culture of one of the nations of the United Kingdom.
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Jammy Duel
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#57
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(Original post by CatusStarbright)
I give a tentative nay on the basis that I think the Welsh language should be conserved, and that it is concerning for the London-based Parliament to be issuing this attempt to eradicate part of the culture of one of the nations of the United Kingdom.
It is not a London-based Parliament, it is a Cardiff based assembly, I would have hoped that the DS would have read the GD and consequently know this.

Beyond that intergenerational teaching by Welsh Nationalists has managed to conserve the language for centuries and would continue to do so.
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Jammy Duel
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#58
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(Original post by Saracen's Fez)
I reject this point, on the grounds that many (most?) of the children learning Welsh at school come from English-speaking homes where there is no other Welsh-speaker there to teach them Welsh.
And I would suggest those from the English-speaking homes are the 20% that say they only have some ability, if they say they have any, not the 20% that say they can speak Welsh; the 20% that will forget the Welsh they do know in a decade because they have no use for it, not the 20% that will continue to be able to speak Welsh until they die; the 20% that know Welsh because they're told they have to, not because the 20% that know Welsh because of ideological or social compuslison
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Saracen's Fez
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#59
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
And I would suggest those from the English-speaking homes are the 20% that say they only have some ability, if they say they have any, not the 20% that say they can speak Welsh; the 20% that will forget the Welsh they do know in a decade because they have no use for it, not the 20% that will continue to be able to speak Welsh until they die; the 20% that know Welsh because they're told they have to, not because the 20% that know Welsh because of ideological or social compuslison
Having been to school with most of the Welsh-speakers from English-speaking (and for that matter Welsh-speaking) homes from the north of the county, I know that that's really not the case.
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barnetlad
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#60
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One of the ways to oppress people, deny them access to certain services, justice etc, is to oppress their language.

We must not be doing something, even unintentionally, to oppress people who have lived in a place for millennia by making it more difficult to use their traditional language, when accessing public services. Welsh public services are bilingual and should remain so. For a country that has lost a large number of jobs with the closure of mines and other industry, we should not be restricting people to be able to access local jobs, which this Bill could do.
Last edited by barnetlad; 1 month ago
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