Information on the reform of the Russian language in 2020 is actively spreading in social networks and numerous online publications. The authors of the reports refer to the statement of the Minister of Science and Education of the Russian Federation Olga Vasilyeva. At the same time, there is no official information on the upcoming reform on the website of the Russian Ministry of Education. One gets the impression that the exaggerated rumor is a fake launched and skillfully replicated by unknowns.
Without 7 letters
The excitement began after allegedly statements by Minister Vasilyeva about making a decision on reforming Russian spelling appeared on the Internet. It was indicated that the project of measures was already ready - the employees of the relevant Ministry worked on it together with colleagues from the HSE and Irkutsk State University of Railway Engineering.
The joint reform project concerns the revision of the Russian alphabet in 2020, namely, its reduction by 7 letters. If the rumors about the planned changes are true, then next year linguists:
- replace "s" and "b" with a soft sign "b";
- abolish the letter "ё";
- they will replace the consonants "c", "x", "h", "w", "u".
Instead of “ё”, “e” will be used, which is not surprising, because in practice this is happening today. Moreover, until 1942 it was believed that the Russian alphabet consists of 32, rather than 33 letters, because "e" and "e" were considered as variations of the same sign. It is more difficult with five consonants - it is not known how to replace them, how such a change will affect pronunciation. A sample of its outline supposedly exists, but has not yet been agreed upon and approved. There are many questions. There is no approved mark - there is no clarity on how to write "tires", "spikes", "school", "temple", "brushwood", "heron", "thicket" and other words with these consonants.
Another ambiguity is surnames in which the listed letters are present. How to be their owners? Change identification documents, diplomas, technical passports for a car? For this, appropriate laws should be adopted, a procedure developed, other nuances taken into account - in order to avoid social tension. Provided that the reform is true, not fiction.
Alphabet and Civilization
The authors argue the need for reform of the Russian language in 2020 with an interesting pattern - again, referring to the words of the Russian Minister Vasilyeva. We are talking about some scientific experiments and studies conducted in different countries of the world.
They revealed the relationship between the successful development of the nation and the quantitative composition of the national alphabet. It turns out that countries are developing faster, in the alphabet of which no more than 26 letters. They boast a strong economy, rare political crises and successful coping with economic disasters.
The experience of other countries
In English, French, German alphabets - 26 letters each, in Italian - 21, although in fact there are 26 of them. Indeed, all these countries are included in the TOP-10 of the richest European countries.
However, the world ranking of Great Britain, France, Germany and Italy is not. But Norway is included in it - it takes the honorable 6th place with an indicator of GDP of 69.2 thousand dollars per capita. At the same time, the Norwegian alphabet has 29 letters, which destroys the data of experiments and studies mentioned above.
School in Norway
But Bougainville Island east of Australia is inhabited by representatives of the Rotokas tribe. Their alphabet includes 6 consonants and 5 vowels - a total of 11 letters - and is considered the smallest in the world. True, the Papuan tribe hardly knows about the economy, development and social benefits. This is another flaw in the study of the relationship between the success of the state and the number of characters in its language.
Many experts believe that alphabetical innovations in different countries of the world usually initiate new authorities. In this way, they seek to cut off the young generation from the culture, traditions, literature and language of their ancestors.
Russian spelling has already been reformed on this principle. In 1917-1918, the Bolsheviks initiated changes to some spelling rules:
- Refused to use Ѣ, Ѳ, І - they were replaced by modern E, F, I.
- Kommersant no longer wrote at the end of words and parts of compound words.
- The word forms He, One, One, One were replaced by They, One, One.
There were other innovations - by initiating them, the Bolshevik government limited the ability to read tsarist books to people who studied writing under the new rules. Reading texts written in Tsarist Russia was uncomfortable and difficult.
Doctors, candidates of philological sciences, associate professors and university professors have their own opinions on the timeliness and feasibility of the Russian language reform in 2020
In their interviews and scientific papers, they often compare the alphabet with the code of civilization. Any attempts to replace the civilization code lead to unrest and disasters. Many specialists in literature consider the language changes announced on the Internet a joke and emphasize that the current alphabet is perfect.
Moreover, such changes are financially costly for the state budget. But many students and teachers believed in the news and were seriously worried. Indeed, the articles spoke not only about the exclusion of 7 letters from the Cyrillic alphabet - they also mentioned the reduction of hours of the Russian language in primary grades. The latter in itself seems absurd.