Saturday, May 16, 2009

Latin Diplomas and Prayers

Christopher Francese, Associate Professor of Classics at Dickinson College, contends that the use of Latin on diplomas has got to go, while Mary Beard questions whether or not Newnham College, Cambridge, needs a new grace (and if so, how Christian should it be, and whether or not it should be written in Latin).

Ultimately the question is why Latin is being used on diplomas and in prayers said at college gatherings?  Is Latin being used to genuinely communicate in these two situations, or is Latin being used to show the elite nature of the diploma and the Formal Hall?