Anonymous asked in TravelAfrica & Middle EastSouth Africa · 1 decade ago

Does everyone from South Africa speak Afrikaans?

I was just wondering if everyone from south africa speak afrikaans.


Someone from Cape Town

Update 2:

All answers contradict each other! haha

18 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The majority of South Africans speak afrikaans. Since I grew up in Zimbabwe, my first language is English although my mom, dad and brothers all speak it fluently. I guess it's all up to the individual.

  • 1 decade ago

    Of course the answers will contradict each other, as we South Africans are a contradictory nation with many different cultural groups and eleven official languages.

    Afrikaans used to be compulsory in school but it isn't anymore, so a lot of young people who don't speak Afrikaans in their homes cannot speak or understand it today. Just as many Afrikaans speakers cannot speak an African language and often their English is poor.

    IMO, they should scrap the other 10 languages and just keep English as an official language. Almost everyone can speak and understand it and it doesn't have the "bad" connotations that Afrikaans does.

    Mostly though, it is the Afrikaans whites, older blacks and the Cape coloureds that can (and does) speak Afrikaans.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    There are many areas in Cape Town and especially Durban that are very Enlgish, but Afrikaans is far more common than English. Many English people, especially those who don't speak Afrikaans very well, never befriend many Afrikaners. As for learning it as a "foreign language", that is evidence that these people must be very isolated in SA. The majority of English people can speak Afrikaans even before they go to school. These friends of yours are probably not integrated in the country yet.

  • 1 decade ago

    I am 100% South African and I only understand basic Afrikaans, I did learn it in school but I am very bad at it. So the answer is no not everyone can or does.

    I was born in Johannesburg lived there for 3.5 years then moved to Durban for 6 months and then moved to Cape Town and have now lived here almost 12 years.

    My dad is Afrikaans but he only talks it to his siblings,parents and some strangers.

    My mom was born in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) so she didnt grow up with Afrikaans.

    So it depends on the person some can some cant. I can't.

    Those who say everyone can are talking crap I am sure Im not the only one who cant talk it or understand it.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I would say most people speak and/or understand Afrikaans.

    Most English schools require you to have afrikaans as a second language.

    but many people have for example Zulu as a first language, therefore dont have afrikaans.

    lets take my example for example. My family on my fathers side is afrikaans (from the Northern Cape). but i went to an english school, therefore did afrikaans. however, i dont speak afrikaans (im from JHB). i understand, and can speak, but not fluent, and certainly cant read it well. this will be the case from many people in JHB.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    No not everyone, Most whites speak it as either a first or second language. Most coloureds speak it as their mother tongue, but many blacks have limited Afrikaans speaking skills as they feel threatened by the language.

  • Lark
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    No. We have 11 official languages. Afrikaans is one of those. Many people do not understand a word of Afrikaans.

  • SK
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    I didnt realise that the language issue is this sensitive until I read this. I live in Pretoria and we have quite a bit of Afrikaans but the following article explains which languages dominate in Pretoria.

  • cheri
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    Probably not everyone - most people can understand or speak Afrikaans, some just prefer not to, they insist on speaking English, though with 11 official languages ...

  • 1 decade ago

    What question is this??? Of course we do!!!

    You will find a lot of Afrikaans speaking people in the northen parts of Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town.

    I speak Afrikaans everyday and in both the private companies that I worked with are Afrikaans speaking and not english. All my job interviews were also in Afrikaans.

    The majority of our population can understand Afrikaans.

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