language skills in Madagascar

To be a successful Ex pat in Madagascar you will need to learn the Language.  There are officially 18 different dialects but there are far more as you move from town to town to village to village and I would give a free estimate of some 50 combined language dialects on top. If you think you can live and survive by only speaking the highlands/Merina language or so called "Language official" then you will be cut off when you travel beyond the Capital, which you will be  discriminated against and that will work in both directions as a double edge sword- it cuts both ways.  Out side tribes are snubbed when they enter Tana for example for their lack of ability to speak Merina or the" Language Official" 

The official language has been perpetuated by the strong political group of the highlands of about 7 Million people- the other 17 tribes ( about 19 million people strong) could care little to  less about such language and is the groundwork for civil war that is the quiet under belly conflict of all the tribes and their language and culture for at least 1000 years.

In short ,you ex pats out there- learn the language and dialects, know who you are talking to and their tribe and  by recognizing their facial features which is a clue to their tribe. Just as I recognize the faces of the  French from the Germans and the Americans and the Aussies and the Brits and the ( and these are easy ones) the Chinese or Indians.

Learning the Local language and dialect shows respect for the tribe but most of all , you will slowly become a member of the community where you choose to settle.

As a side note to language skills, I notice that many threads have a high number of "views".  I understand that the English Language is the worlds most widely spoken language (1,500,000,000 people).  Which is why I encourage viewers of this thread or any other thread to participate even if  your English is not your best language or is broken English or should you wish to contribute to this thread or any other topic and in your own language.  With the wonderful world of Google translate your word,  voice and Ideas will contribute the better understanding of your feeling of Madagascar in the English section of the Madagascar forum.   Because English is the universal language of the Planet earth, English speakers are not snooty about the language and encourage dialog. 
Please feel free to contribute your ideas in your language or use a translate program to contribute to Forum.

I UNDERSTAND HOW IT FEELS TO SPEAK MALAGASY IN A BROKEN ACCENTED AMERICAN CONTEXT FOR 15 YEARS, but it is better to speak broken language than not at all.
Je comprends comment il se sent à parler MALAGASY dans un contexte américain brisé ACCENTED pendant 15 ans, mais il vaut mieux parler le langage brisé que pas du tout.

Go here if you want to get a  start on sharing your thoughts to the rest of the ex pats on the English forum. … 0translate

for example if you are a native Spanish speaker than the translation would look like this

Como una nota lateral a las habilidades del lenguaje, observo que muchos hilos tienen un alto número de "vistas". Entiendo que el idioma inglés es el idioma más difundido del mundo. Es por eso que animo a los espectadores de este hilo o cualquier otro hilo para participar incluso si el inglés no es su mejor idioma o está roto Inglés o si desea contribuir a este hilo o cualquier otro tema y en su propio idioma. Con el mundo maravilloso de Google traduce tu palabra, voz e ideas contribuirá a la mejor comprensión de tu sentimiento de Madagascar en la sección inglesa del foro de Madagascar. Debido a que el inglés es el lenguaje universal del planeta tierra, los hablantes de inglés no son aficionados a la lengua y fomentan el diálogo. Por favor, siéntase libre de contribuir con sus ideas en su idioma o utilice un programa de traducción para contribuir al Foro. Ve aquí si quieres empezar a compartir tus pensamientos con el resto de ex pats en el foro inglés.

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