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« Tuna 4 / 2019

Lukas and the Madhouse: The Grimaces of Time

This article deals with problems related to the use of the Estonian language in our contemporary society. There has been quite a lot of discussion about the position of Estonian in the academic sector – it has been admitted that Estonian has lost some of its positions to English as a language of science and research, and as a language of teaching at the universities.

This is the starting point of the article, appropriate just now as the University of Tartu celebrates its centennial as the National University of Estonia. However, the argument goes further, asking what will be the future of Estonian as a language of services and (pop) culture in Estonia if the existing trends continue?

The current Minister of Culture Mr. Tõnis Lukas has expressed his concerns about the possible future of our language. He has been criticised by some newspapers and journalists, who have rated his positions as being outdated, xenophobic, etc. The article deals with these controversies and depicts some aspects of media life and experiences in Estonia during the autumn of 2019.