The Slovenian Language Academy released a statement this morning proposing that the teaching of declensions, or skloni, be dropped from the school curriculum.
According to the JL Flanner, reporting for the portal Total Slovenia News, the plan calls for the various word-endings be phased out from official publications and pronouncements over a three-year period, starting with the dual.
The move, which was in part inspired by China’s introduction of simplified characters in the 1950s, would represent the greatest reformation of the language since Jernej Kopitar’s grammar of 1808.
Proponents, including the Academy’s President, Dr Butalci, claim that it would make Slovenian easier for immigrants to learn, vital if the country is to deal with its ageing society.
It would also help preserve a language that is seen as under threat from the pressures of globalization, which in recent years has led to the rise of “Slovenglish”, a bastard form that mixes Slovene and English into phrases such as “kaj da f?”
While at present only a proposal, Dr Butalci said that the issue should be debated in Parliament as a matter of some urgency in the coming weeks, ahead of the next school year, and that, if approved, she envisaged the first set of official documents to be released in the new, simplified form of Slovenian starting from two years today, on April 1 2021.