The ChatNoir @GnChNr Compass

MycompassSome Algerian tweeples took the political compass test to find out where they would be on a (left/right, authoritarian/libertarian) plane. I did take that test several years ago and took it again some days ago with fellow tweeples. To my surprise (or not), my position didn’t change much in all these years. No conclusion implied but note how Gandhi is the closest to me.

This is a way for me to introduce a new compass which I named “The ChatNoir Compass”. I hope fellow Algeria blogger ChatNoir won’t mind and won’t sue me for intellectual property.

Those among you who follow Algeria’s exciting political life have probably read of the fierce debate which is taking place around the Algerian education ministry proposal/decision to use Algerian colloquial language or dardja in the early primary school years to make sure the pupils are not “shocked” when facing a new language (Modern Standard Arabic) which wouldn’t be their mother tongue. I leave it to you to check the Algerian and foreign press which reported about it. There are also many opinion articles and blog posts dealing with the topic. For once I decided to not react with a blog post as I had already shared my opinion about dardja in my Language and Belonging series.

I regret that most of the opinions I read or heard were based on the binary perspective I wrote about in my previous post. I will therefore not share any of them with the exception of Lameen Souag’s who wrote a sensible text. I encourage you to read it.

Chatnoir also wrote about the topic and, as he promised on Twitter, offered a description of the Algerian sociopolitical landscape which is perhaps expected to help us understand the roots of the dardja debate and many other past and present issues. I read the post this morning and noticed the binary split again. He speaks of the ministry of education but doesn’t mention Benbouzid’s 14 years and I don’t think the man is an islamist. Also, this “peut-etre a tort” he added to this sentence “Cette levée de boucliers générale contre Benghabrit par les forces rétrogrades du pays valide (peut-être à tort) la politique qu’elle veut mener” doesn’t make it more rational.

But I said I won’t engage in this debate and I am here to “help”. I mean I read Chatnoir’s post and I thought that it was too bad a plot didn’t come along with the text. So I reread the post and made the below map where I humbly attempted to position the persons he mentioned. I’ve got an idea on where Chatnoir would sit but I feel I’ve gone already too far…

Here is the compass so take the test and find out where you are.

ChatNoitCompassI almost forgot. The test is very simple and takes 2 to 3 seconds. All you have to do is to say YES or NO to this single question: Do you support Nouria Benghebrit?

PS: I haven’t blogged in ages so I write while the motivation is here. I hope you don’t mind two posts in two days.
PPS: This post a partly for fun… just in case someone takes it too seriously 🙂


4 thoughts on “The ChatNoir @GnChNr Compass

  1. Do you know the British expression “to wind someone up”? The idea behind it is that when you find someone who automatically gets angry every time you bring up a certain idea, you can amuse yourself – and take control of the situation – by deliberately bringing it up at times when they should be focusing on something else, then silently laughing at them as they embarrass themselves by ranting and raving. (Of course that’s in the context of British society, where the golden rule is always to underreact.) This whole Benghabrit issue looks to me like a very successful attempt by someone in the power structure to wind up the entire country – first the “conservatives” reacting on autopilot to any threat to the sanctity of Arabic, then the “secularists” reacting on autopilot to any rhetoric about the sanctity of Arabic. It would be nice if both sides realised that this kind of automatic reaction leaves their attention and energy at the mercy of anyone with influence over the press.

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