Presentation on theme: "English as a global language. “English is the Global Language” Is this statement obvious? How many news articles deal with this topic? (click here."— Presentation transcript:
“English is the Global Language” Is this statement obvious? How many news articles deal with this topic? (click here to find out) How many news articles deal with this topic? (click here to find out) The headline isn’t stating the obvious. For what does it mean exactly? What is a global language? How do you feel about the fact that “English rules”?
What is a global language? Mother-tongue use cannot give a language global status. Other countries have to take it up. How does a country take up a language? Official language Foreign-language teaching Financial issues
What is a native speaker? International mobility First-language Second-language Foreign-language P.98-99 Graddol, D. English Next
How can a language be official? Constitution Some countries don’t mention it (Britain) In some countries this causes controversy (USA)
Why English? Nicer? Easier? Easy grammar? More cosmopolitan? (vs. French) More democratic? One chief reason: THE POWER OF ITS PEOPLE (people – not language!)
International language dominance Military power Economic and political power 19th-20th centuries > economic developments begin to operate on a global scale New communication technologies International marketing and advertising Mass entertainment industry
Why do we need a global language? Translation cannot work when communities are linguistically mixed Need for a common language Sometimes communities adopt a simplified language > pidgin People are more mobile > this is the first example in human history
Trade language Pidgin a drastically simplified form of communication between two or more languages e.g. Beach-la-Mar in the South Seas Creole a more complex language developed from a Pidgin e.g. Tok Pisin in Papua New Guinea
What are the dangers? Other languages will disappear World of unity and peace …? A single language does not guarantee social harmony or mutual understanding The American Civil War The Spanish Civil War The Vietnam war Former Yugoslavia Contemporary Northern Ireland
Linguistic Power Would native speakers be in a position of power? Research Business world Bilingualism is the solution (it won’t be a problem for future generations)
Would people become lazy? Within English speaking communities there are signs of growing awareness of the need to break away from the traditional monolingual bias. Growing respect for other cultures
Endangered languages When a language dies, much is lost. Once lost, it can never be recaptured, especially for languages that have never been written down. Vigorous movements of support of linguistic minorities, commonly associated with nationalism > important truth: THE NEED FOR IDENTITY
Language protection France (e.g. ordinateur vs. computer) What about reactions in Italy? Solutions are more likely to come from the domain of economic policy
Could anything stop a global language? A revolution An alternative method of communication that would eliminate the need for a global language We live in a critical era
Homework Read p. 1-27 Ask 3 people you know (try to choose different ages, educational backgrounds etc.) what they think about English as a global language and report interesting views on the blog.