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Maltese people threat to own language

The biggest threat to the Maltese language comes not from foreigners but from the Maltese themselves, according to a student who had just obtained a Doctor of Philosophy degree.

“We need to believe in the Maltese language and not think it is related to the lower class of society,” George Farrugia said in a graduation speech yesterday.

Dr Farrugia, who wrote his thesis on the gender assigned to English words absorbed into the Maltese language, was among the first set of students to graduate in a series of ceremonies that will continue for several days.

The Maltese language was flexible and had adapted itself to changes over the centuries even though the island was under different rulers, Dr Farrugia said. The biggest threat now, he warned, was internal – from the Maltese people themselves.

“We should not be ashamed to speak Maltese at home, in the street, in the shops, in the media and in the country’s highest institutions,” he said.

The Maltese language could not be seen as a precious antique only to be admired from a distance or as a unique language studied by foreigners for its “particular mechanisms”. Instead, it should be seen and used as an effective tool to be used in all aspects of life, he said.

“If we truly value our native language as a national heritage, then we need to believe in it.”

In another graduation speech, Dion Buhagiar, of the Department of Building and Civil Engineering, spoke about the ­importance of research and develop­­ment, which, he said, should be closely tied with the industry.

“Collaboration, especially be­tween University faculties and other learned institutions, should be actively encouraged in order to provide opportunities for greater cross fertilisation of knowledge,” Prof. Buhagiar said.

The graduates:

Master of Arts in Cultural Heritage Management

Sponsor: Prof. A. Torpiano

Sarah Mary Borg, Daphne Caruana, Tracey Ann Cumbo, Catherine Role’, Susan Ronald, Sandro Sciberras.

Master of Conservation in Applied Conservation ­Studies

Sponsor: Prof. A. Torpiano

Jeannette Huy-Van Welzen.

Master of Arts in Theology

Sponsor: Rev. Prof. E. Agius

Fabio Borg, Renald James Buhagiar, Joseph Cardona, Maria Caruana, Emanuel Casingena, Jesmond Cutajar, Constantin Debono, Alfred M. Falzon, Christopher Grima, Rachel Hoiles, Mariosa Micallef, Fiorella Mifsud Saydon, Phyllis Sammut Smith, Mariella Spiteri-Gonzi, Mario Zerafa, Michelina Zerafa.

Master of Arts in Pastoral ­Studies

Sponsor: Rev. Prof. E. Agius

Deo Debono.

Licentiate in Sacred Theology

Sponsor: Rev. Prof. E. Agius

Glen Buhagiar, Nicholas Joseph Doublet, Andrea Zaffarese, Ronnie Zammit.

Master of Philosophy

Sponsor: Rev. Prof. E. Agius

Doris Cannataci.

Master of Arts in European Studies

Sponsor: Prof. R. Pace

Alexandra Attard, Mark Anthony Borg, Karl Engerer, David Magri, Estelle Sant, Stefan Schaa, Nighat John Urpani, Malcolm Luke Vassallo, Alison Zammit, Doreen Zammit, Sarah Zammit.

Master of Arts in Islands and Small States Studies

Sponsor: Prof. R. Pace

Joseph Azzopardi, Hristo Ivanov Hristov, Luciano Pace Parascandalo, Ritianne Stellini, Emren John Vella.

Master of Arts in Diplomatic Studies

Sponsor: Prof. S. Calleya

Francesca Abela, Sammy Bishtawi, Deborah Maria Borg, Elizabeth Bugeja, Claire Bugeja Desain, Daniela Maria Callus, Francine Caruana, Urska Cehner, Alan Cordina, Roseanne Cortis, Amber Marie Darmanin, Charlene Debrincat, Albert Delia, Petra Dolezelova, Kristina Farrugia, Ekaterina Gorbunova, Christabel Grech, Charlene Grima, Claudiu Alexandru Hurban, Daisy Francesca Kirk, Ryan Mercieca, Joseph Pisani, Kevin Pulis, Laura Sammut, Maya Schembri, Chirelle Sciberras, Katya Scicluna Bartoli, Maria Spiteri, Daniela Sultana, Chantelle Tabone, Marilyn Tanti, Johannes Vollertsen.

Master of Diplomacy

Sponsor: Prof. S. Calleya

Sofiko Balanchivadze, Moh­amed Boussabat, Mira Dašic, Fabiola Duro, Akram Elaatar, Heba El-Tahan, Celil Erdogan, Taojie Guo, Osama Mohamed Hamdy Ibrahim, Viola Kaloshi, Elibahati Ngoyai Lowassa, Rustam Rustamov, Suad Soboh.

Master of Music

Sponsor: Prof. S. Mercieca

Dominic Galea.

Master in the Science of Performative Creativity

Sponsor: Prof. S. Mercieca

Sean Buhagiar, Chen Cheng.

Master of Arts in Baroque Studies

Sponsor: Prof. D. Delucca

Sonia Bezzina, Fleur Brincat, Kenneth Cauchi.

Doctor of Philosophy

Sponsor: Dr. M. Zammit

George Farrugia.

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