© 2022










Mother Tongue Mother Tongue Mother Tongue 

Mother Tongue
By Aseel AlYaqoub

Aseel AlYaqoub (b. 1986, Kuwait) is a research-based and multi-disciplinary artist working across history, political science and cultural sociology.
Languages 71 (from Afrikaans to Zulu), English (first language), Arabic (mother tongue)
“What the eye is to the lover – that particular, ordinary eye he or she is born with – language – whatever language history has made his or her mother-tongue – is to the patriot. Through that language, encountered at mother’s knee and parted with only at the grave, pasts are restored, fellowships are imagined, and futures dreamed” – Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities.

Language is such a pervasive component of our everyday lives that we often tend to forget the complex power dynamics embedded in humans’ engagements with language. But what is the relationship between language and social status? Why are specific languages considered to be better and more prestigious than others? What were the implications of colonization for the indigenous languages of the populations that experienced colonial domination? Finally, what is the role of English in today’s globalized and digital world?

Mother Tongue visually represents population and language statistics in a three-dimensional form. The nation’s population determined the height and structure of the sculpture, and shared languages defined their topographic grouping. Countries are interconnected to highlight the role of linguistic ideologies in the colonial enterprise, the historical production of standard languages and the construction of hegemonic power. In parallel, this statement was translated into 71 languages on Google Translate to underline its limitations and contrast its language choices within the context of the world. This English statement was omitted from the presentation to counter and restructure the hierarchal arrangement of language.







SCROLL TO EXPLORE 
ISSUE 002 LEXIS AXIS

FRESH EXPLORATIONS, PERSPECTIVES AND DIALOGUE THAT INTERSECTS WITH ENVIRONMENTS.
CONTACT FAYDDIGITAL@GMAIL.COM
FAYD © 2022. All rights reserved. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Cookies are used to enhance your experience. See more here