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2. 8. 2021.
155 a MARCEL COURTHIADE – IN MEMORIAM
Marcel Courthiade via Wikimedia Commons
MARCEL COURTHIADE – IN MEMORIAM

Marcel Courthiade bio je neumorni aktivist i stručnjak za romska pitanja, sjajan profesor koji je usavršio mnoge jezike. Bio je dobro poznat na Balkanu, regiji koja mu je bila kao drugi dom.

Autor: Clément Baloge
Prijevod: Daria Maracheva

Marcel Courthiade preminuo je 4. ožujka 2021. godine u Tirani u 67. godini. Jezikoslovac je rođen 2. kolovoza 1953. godine u Montceau-les-Minesu u Francuskoj. Počeo je studirati medicinu u Clermont-Ferrandu, ali se brzo prebacio na lingvistiku. Dobio je diplomu iz poljskog, srpskohrvatskog (tada), albanskog i makedonskog jezika. Također je tokom života naučio sanskrt, hebrejski, latinski, grčki, engleski, njemački, španjolski, talijanski, mađarski, rumunjski i ruski jezik. Ali, svoj život je posvetio romskom jeziku. Radio je kao jezikoslovac, profesor i prevoditelj. Od 1997. godine predavao je romski jezik i kulturu na sveučilištu INALCO u Parizu. Iza sebe je ostavio znatan broj izvanrednih publikacija koje nam pomažu razumjeti i bolje upoznati Rome, romsku povijest i jezik. Između ostalog, Marcel Courthiade je 2019. godine objavio knjigu o povijesti Roma od njihovog izgnanstva iz Indije sve do danas. Osim toga, objavljivao je članke u nekoliko znanstvenih časopisa u Francuskoj i Poljskoj poput Studia rromologica.

Njegova uspješna karijera odvijala se uz njegov svakodnevni aktivizam za prava Roma, posebno u području promoviranja romskog jezika i kulture, te borbe protiv diskriminacije i predrasuda.

Marcelovo sudjelovanje u Međunarodnoj romskoj uniji (IRU) govori o njegovoj neizmjernoj  posvećenosti romskom pokretu. Bio je podpresjednik IRU-a od 1989. do 1990. i organizirao je Četvrti međunarodni kongres Roma u Varšavi u travnju 1990. godine. Predstavnici Roma su tokom tog Kongresa utvrdili osnove romske pismenosti i započeli su standardizaciju romskog jezika. Nakon toga, Marcel Courthiade je postao čelnik Komisije za romski jezik i jezična prava. Također je bio zadužen za koordiniranje aktivnosti na stvaranju prvog rječnika romskog jezika. Standardizacija romskog jezika izazvala je kritike, uključujući i nekih romskih aktivista. Tvrdili su da romski jezik ne postoji jer različite romske skupine imaju svoj jezik te standardizacija romskog jezika bi samo uništila raznolikost Roma. Međutim, Courthiade je smatrao da je standardizacija romskog jezika ključna za ujedinjenje Roma. Prema Marcelu Courthiadeu:

“Romski jezik je formaliziran od strane romskih vlasti, romskih institucija, ali ne i od strane država. [...] Zapravo, normalno je da je jezik formaliziran kada ga formaliziraju njegove vlastite institucije, a ne drugi”.

Marcel Courthiade bio je posebno aktivan na Balkanu, regiji za koju je imao posebne osjećaje, jer je na Balkanu radio i živio dugi niz godina. Bio je savjetnik za politiku obrazovanja Roma u vladama Srbije, Kosova, Albanije, Bosne i Hercegovine i Mađarske.

Zahvaljujući svojoj strasti i stalnoj želji za usavršavanjem svojih znanja o romskom jeziku i kulturi, Marcel Courthiade postao je jedan od najpoštovanijih glasova romskog pokreta. Ostavio je iza sebe neprocjenjivo naslijeđe u obliku duge bibliografije i brojnih postignuća u kojima je sudjelovao kao aktivist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marcel Courthiade was a tireless activist and specialist for the Roma cause, a brilliant professor who mastered many languages. He was especially known in the Balkans, a region that was like his second home.

On March 4 2021, Marcel Courthiade passed away in Tirana, at the age of 67. The linguist was born in 1953, on August 2, in Montceau-les-Mines (France). He started to study medicine in Clermont-Ferrand but quickly decided to switch to linguistic. He successfully got a diploma in Polish, Serbo-Croatian (then), Albanian and Macedonian. Throughout his life, he also mastered Sanskrit, Hebrew, Latin, Greek, English, German, Spanish, Italian, Hungarian, Romanian and Russian. However, he dedicated his life to the Romani language. He worked as a linguist, professor and interpreter. Since 1997, he was teaching the Romani language and culture at the INALCO University in Paris. He left behind him a considerable and outstanding amount of publications that help us to understand and know more about the Roma, their history and their language. Among other things, he published in 2019 a book relating the history of Roma from their exile from India to nowadays. Moreover, he was involved in several scientific magazines in France and Poland, such as Studia rromologica.

His successful career went along with everyday activism for the rights of Roma, especially to promote Roma language and culture as well as to fight discrimination and prejudices.

His involvement in the International Romani Union (IRU) testifies his immeasurable action for the Roma movement. He was the acting vice-president of the IRU from 1989 to 1990 and organized the Fourth International Congress of Roma in Warsaw in April 1990. During this Congress, Roma representatives set up some of the bases of Romani transcription and standardization. After that, Marcel Courthiade became in charge of the Commission for Romani language and linguistic rights. He also coordinated the creation of the first dictionary of Romani. The standardization of the language has drawn criticism, including from some Roma activists. They argue that the Roma language is not a reality as different Roma groups speak differently and that it would negate the diversity of Roma. However, Courthiade claimed that a standardized language represents a crucial element for the unification of Roma, something that many authorities throughout Europe do not want. According to him:

“It (the Romani language) has been formalized by the Romani authorities, by the Romani institutions, but not by the States. [...] In fact, logically we must say that it is normal for a language to be formalized when it is formalized by its own institutions, not by others.“

Marcel Courthiade was particularly active in the Balkans, a region for which he had particular feelings, as he worked and lived in Balkans for many years. He used to be an advisor regarding Roma education policies for governments in Serbia, Kosovo, Albania or Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as in Hungary.

Thanks to his passion and dedication to learn and communicate about Roma culture and language, Marcel Courthiade became one of the most respected voices of the Roma movement. He left behind him a priceless legacy with his lengthy bibliography and the numerous achievements he participated in as an activist.